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Survived Borneo Orangutan Charge While Studying With Dr Galdikas Research Team

April 02, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 184

You were guaranteed a different experience at Dr. Galdikas research camp and Borneo Orangutan preserve. Today was no exception. Awareness was crucial. This was after all the jungle. Wild animals and incredible sounds filled our senses. The smell, the jungle sounds, the unknown.

"Watch out, lady! A leech. Look!" They showed me my legs full of leeches. "What do you mean 'watch out'? They're already eating me up!"

"No, listen. Listen carefully."

And in the middle of the silent jungle the headhunters taught me to prevent the leeches from jumping on me by just listening to a minute sound they make when they're about to jump. Incredible. I'll have to remember this walking the streets of New York City.

Back at camp everybody had returned. Audrey entered with a huge grin, carrying a tiny baby orangutan wearing a diaper "I taught him how to climb a tree," she said, handing him a milk bottle.

I joined the researchers in the dorms. I couldn't understand why blood covered the wooden plank floor.

"We are de-leeching ourselves. Look, like this." They showed me how to pull them off and burn them. It was a painful process that we had to endure every night prior to our daily meal of rice and bananas. Since there was no electricity, we were in bed by six o'clock.

The following morning everybody trekked to the river with soap and a towel to wash themselves or do the laundry. Wanting to be the first one down the long wooden plank, I forged ahead of the group, suddenly coming upon a huge figure in the mist a hundred feet from me. Quickly remembering what Prof Galdikas had said the night before, "If you are indisposed, don't leave the camp. If you do meet a male orangutan, don't stare him down, but go on the floor face down and don't move till he is gone."

In a flash, this adult male orangutan was upon me. I was face down, trying not to give out scents of fear. I could smell a strong musky odor. He patted my shirt and hair with his long curved fingers then left without a sound, probably more baffled than me.

After his departure reality kicked in, and I started to shake and cry silently. I almost crawled back to camp, but halfway through, I recaptured my senses and sat. I looked at the river, taking in that experience, which was so unique and terrifying yet so sacred. It made me stronger. Yes, it did. I can walk New York City at night knowing my surroundings, feeling my boundaries and controlling my feelings.

After that experience, I felt like Queen of the Jungle. I continued my research alone day after day. My mother and her baby slept on my hammock, eating my protein bar, rice and bananas. A gigantic anaconda crossing my path didn't perturb me. I belonged to the jungle. For more stories like these visit The Memory of Vinegar and Oil and grab a copy of my book.

Dr. Elidé Beltram, PhD is a psychoanalyst and a New Age scientist. Prior to her studies on humans, she studied the behavior of the wild orangutan of Borneo and taught language to dolphins in Hawaii. She was a composer who founded the Westchester Music Ensemble for Living Composers (Carnegie Hall, 1995) She created a therapeutic modality called "Shadow Sound Therapy," a cathartic treatment using music. She has given lectures and workshops in Switzerland, Italy and New York City. She is a scholar of Astrology and Homeopathic Medicine and is on the faculty and staff of the Washington Square Institute for Psychotherapy in New York City, where she also resides. Her current book The Memory of Vinegar and Oil: Origins Unified, is about her travels to; and scientific studies in Mongolia, Borneo, Spain, Italy, Tojaland, Morocco and Greece, on the topics of sound and healing, study of the Borneo Orangutan, spirtual symbolism and rituals, dissonant music used to heal. quantum physics,

Source: EzineArticles
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