Friday, 4 December 2009

The Beginnings of Phase 3 - 03.12.09

The final phase of Borneo's Autumn expedition is well under way and venturers are all over Sabah taking part in environmental, community and adventure phases as we speak. The loop has headed out for the final time with Sarah, Jilly and Maria in Bravo 3. They will be returning soon with lots of news and photos for the blog so you can find out what they have been up to.

This week I have paid a visit to a project site I worked on during my first expedition and attended the opening ceremony of their eco lodge. After 10 years of planning and building, this fantastic co-operative scheme in the small village of Batuh Puteh on the Kinabatangan River, has been completed, creating a sustainable income for this community. Raleigh have been involved with this project for many years and the excitement in the village at seeing their dream realised was infectious. It reminded me of the lasting effects Raleigh's projects can have. Even 2 years later I was remembered by everyone I worked alongside in this kampung and I have no doubt that your friends and family out on project sites now are making the same kind of bonds right now. It really is a once in a lifetime experience!

On route we had an opportunity to visit Sepilok and although the theme set for the loop was 'Come Dine With Me' alpha 4 bypassed it and went with 'Saturday Morning Kitchen.' As the creator of the winning menu, I ended up cooking for the team. However, I was treated to a helper for the evening - but only after partaking in a game of 'Blind Date/Slave.' After answering some very topical questions with the help of Cilla 'Emma Godden' Black, Andrew McPhadden was my kitchen slave for the evening. Don't worry I didn't work him too hard. That evening we were also treated to a lo-o-o-o-ng game of 'Who's the Man,' a bowl of punch, doughnuts drenched in condensed milk and fresh bread with soup. Any of you parents back home under the illusion that your kids can't boil an egg - they are pulling the wool over you're eyes! Get them in the kitchen when they get back.

Finally we have a few photos of the dive island, after deputy programme manager Sarah joined them on Mamutik for a few days dive training. She has returned with the photos and the tan.

Looks hellish doesn't it? After these intrepid individuals took part in 5 days of deep sea diving training and a huge underwater clean up, they are now off into the jungle to test their mettle for the next 12 days. Good luck Alpha 5!

Over the radio this week I have heard that alpha 1 at Minosuh Kindergarten build have celebrated Dan's birthday with the local church. Alpha 5 our dive / trek group have had a beauty pageant - the boys were the beauties the girls provided the clothes. Alpha 7 are ahead on their project and have had a womens day, with the boys doing whatever they are told all day! I hear the men's day is coming soon. They have also had karaoke with the villagers in the church, pancake day and been teaching in the school. Alpha 4 at the Sunbear sanctuary have been mugged of their water bottles regularly by a light fingered orangutan and got into the christmas spirit by making decorations and an advent calendar from old food boxes, very Blue Peter! Their day leader has also been waking them on a morning with a Crimbo carol - Ouch! They are making pizza bases today for Charlie's birthday. The Sunbear Sanctuary has started its own blog and members of Alpha 4 have written the first entry to be posted soon. Check out the link to their site on the top right. Alpha 3 in Imbak Canyon have just had a Scottish day with haggis and highland games! All busy on the entertainment front then and they're pretty busy at work too!

A quick note all of you in the Netherlands - just to let you know your blog comments have been received and will be posted. All our comments go through a moderating system before being published on the blog and unfortunately my Dutch is a little rusty! Your comments have been printed out and passed on to venturers on the loop and tommorow my trusty translator will return to give them a read through so they can be put on the net. Sorry for the delay!


Anonymous said...

Hi Courtney, Africa, Taylor and Jack. Just a reminder of your Welcome Home BBQ at Ngulla on the 21st Dec. You will all be attending:) Enjoy your last phase, and have a ball at end of exped.

I would like to thank Jim, Mac, Field Base and all the great VPM's for helping our four "little vegimites":) Enjoy your end of exped party, I'm sure you will.

To the 'awesome foresome' see you
on the 17th.


sophie said...

BRY!! I miss you with all my heart! cant wait to see you in less than 3 wks! I was so excited bout seeing your face in the pix and soooo excited reading about this project! man its amazing! ur such a trouper cant wait to hear all about it!!! IM SENDING YOU THE BIGGEST GiNGER LOVE OF ALL TIME! love sofee x x x

Anonymous said...

Hi Lotte
I can't think of any really exciting news to tell you although I am going to see Josh's play tonight - Amadeus - so should be quite good. I'm off to stay the night with Sean and Ally tomorrow as it's Ally's birthday and I'll be babysitting while they go out to party. What a sad life I lead! It's really cold here and the forecast is snow for next week so I'd be quite happy to swap places with you for a while. How are you - Mummy said that you haven't been very well. I hope it's just a 24 hour bug and you're back to your normal self pretty soon. I've given Lexie a haircut this afternoon which she enjoyed regardless of what it looks like. Actually, it's not too bad even if I say so myself. I've been trying to organise my Christmas shopping and prezzies, so if you've got any ideas, let me know. I'll write again next week.
Lots of love

Lisa L. said...

Julian- Can't wait to see you! and enjoy those magnificent looking beaches (hope the mask is working out)'s getting cold here in NY! I keep running into people who ask about you and they all can't believe you are stlll there! Anyway, I'm already thinking of a homecoming dinner....I'm busy making lots of soup!...just kidding.

Jonesy is anxiously waiting for your return home too....much love - mom

monique said...

To Sabine Hamer.

Hoi Bien, Hoe was het duiken ? Ben heel erg benieuwd hoe je het vond. Best spannend lijkt mij. En onder water fantastisch zeker, spectaculair.De omgeving en strand zien er ook idyllisch uit. En als het goed is ben je nu dus begonnen met de trekking. Regen ? Alles nat ? Ben benieuwd of er nog wat foto's komen van de trekking.
Veel plezier. Liefs mamma

Julie said...

Hi Nicky, Dive Island looks fantastic!!! like some sort of paradise island getaway!!!!!!!!!
Take care of yourself. Try not to top up your tan too much, we are all rather pastey here!!!
Miss you loads son!!!!!!!!! Lots of love Mum xxxxxxxxxxx

Bilal Khan said...

JUST so you know alexia, pakistan are beating new zealand in the cricket. :) VERY manly sport, yeah? And also just so you know...the kiwi team is butt ugly. not too much of a surprise though, i guess. only a week left now till im back! x

Mandy and Rob said...

Not long now and then we'll all be in the warm! can't wait to be somewhere away from builders for a few weeks, the bad news is the bathrooms still aren't done.

Just incase you didn't get the info before. You should be met at Kuching airport and taken to the Hilton Hotel

Eventers get their shoes back on on Thurs 10th and then start walk work ready for when you get back.

love Mum xxx

sootee said...

Hi Drew Thomson,
It's December already and you;ll soon be home with lots of tales to tell I hope. Dad and I flew back yesterday and have loads to tell you of the Floridian cousins. It was a fantastic ten days but we're back to rain and cold. Going to see the reindeer parade tonight but at least I didn;t need to be Mrs Santa this year. Doug gets back with Dad this afternoon so the washing machine is on standby. Let us know what your plans are to travel home but a pick up would be ok with us. Really looking forward to it. Doug has just arrived to it's unpack the car time.
Be good and enjoy the treck. The diving looked amazing!
Oh and I did 'Space Mountain' and the 'Water flume drop thingy ride' at Disney World! Still feeling ill!
Take care and see you very soob.
Love Mum

Colin S said...

Hi Richard

Received your letter, loved your pictures, your such a good artist I felt as if I was there with you!!! Rovers bet Chelsea on penalties and are now in the Semi final against Aston Villa of the carling cup, could be going to Wembley against one of the Manchesters.

Let us know what country you will be in for Christmas, take care.

Love Jane & Colin XXXX

Anonymous said...

Hey Gur!!
Just a quick note to say whagwan and comment on how tanned you've got! i couldnt even make out your face in some of the pics...its just all teeth! haha
Hope its all going well out there...looks it. We're missing you loads and cant wait for your return, counting down the weeks. hurry up and finish your fun. hopefully you recd the letters by now..?? love all of us xxxxxx

carrie said...

Hi Bry - glad you've heard from Sophee - enjoyed seeing the photos' on Raliegh's blogg. Had a shoot today, Fern has gone completely deaf! otherwise a good day. Enjoy the sun , but we have to compensate delicious roast beef and yorkshire pudding, succulent carrots and 17 kilos of potatoes, followed by apple crumble and creamy cream, together with a gin and tonic, ice and lemon. then off to a bed in crisp, clean sweatly smelling sheets .... you then wake up to ..... a howling gale, floods, freezing temperatures, and jobs to do!! so enjoy your last few weeks, we can;t wait to see you , we've missed you loads- well done to you ALL at Raliegh for giving so much to this community, and congratulations to the leaders for organising everything so well, I hear glowing reports. Happy Christmas to you all, lots of love to everyone, Hi tec Mum xxx

Julie Morris said...

Hi Sam - just a quick footi message that you'll mainly be glad to hear. West Ham 0 United 4, Man City 2 Chelsea 1 - all meaning United are now only 2 points behind Chelsea! What you won't be so pleased to hear is that, apparently, we have no defenders fit - game finished with Giggs left back, Carrick, Fletcher and someone else (can't remember!) at the back!

Nice pics of the diving - can't see you on any, so I take it that may mean you are treking and,lucky you, finishing off with the holiday-like diving? Try not to come home too brown - we're descending into the milk bottle look here! Must book a holiday in the New Year!

Lots of love,

Mum x

Anonymous said...

Hi Alexia
Don't listen to Bilal NZ has beaten Pakistan in the last 3 yes 3 games!!!!!! and we won the rugby 7's and we beat the english , the french, and the italians at rugby . NZ is the bomb we are fantastic!!!!! Anyway we are stocking up on icecream for your arrival in 2 weeks - Gabriella is wearing your clothes , your make up and is going out with your boyfriends - as if she would - hope your cooking is still improving looking forward to all that cooking you are going to do when you get back. Had a cider or 2 for you at the sevens - it was an awesome couple of days with NZ meeting Samoa in the final, Marissa was so happy she went hoarse from yelling.
love mum

Lily Cooke said...

For Jessica Canbas

Hey Jessy, not long till your home now.

Just a quick message to remind u of how proud of you i am, all the pictures look AMAZING!! and your doing such phenominal things! WOW!

Can't wait for christmas and new year my lovely.

I was listening to 'same girl' the other day and it was making me laugh so so much, also how much i miss you.

Can't wait to see you angel, next time you can let me know whether u want me to meet u the day u come home.

Miss you tonnes, love you millions

Lil xxxxxxx

ann said...

hi Nic Nac, well, nearly at the end of trekking! Hope it was all you wanted it to be and that there weren't too many creepy crawlies, or mossie bites (you'll look great in our xmas photos!)
Just seen pics of the dive island, it looks amazing. We are all so jealous.
Can't believe it's less than 2 weeks till you come home.
We love and miss you
mum and dad x

Jessie's Mum said...

Hi Jessie ( alpaha 7 )

Hope your final phase in the community is going really really well and you are enjoying it.
So excited that you will be home next week and Baba and I cant wait to hear all your tales of the jungle. We received your letters and your trekking log on Saturday, what a trek! they made us laugh and almost cry in parts, although we did pick up on a clear theme running throughout which was food or should I say the lack of your favourite foods :). It has been really busy here, we had our christmas office bash at Claridges which was fantastic. We will have to go when you come home, their Christmas tree this year was designed by John Galliano and it is wacky, it's a bare chestnut type tree with the odd leave on branches and a cheetah sitting on one branch and it's all turquoise / blue ish in colour including the cheetah - different! Baba and I put our Christmas tree up over the weekend, however, my reindeers have gone missing in the loft, Baba says he will go back into the loft next weekend on another search and rescue mission :)so they should be in situ by the time you return. Pressies are being wrapped slowly but will all be under they tree by the time you get home. Your room is now truely sparkling and fluffy pillows and quilt await your return home, cant wait to see you next friday lots and lots of hugs and kisses love you loads Mum + Baba xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

jeff said...

hey uncle chi,
howre you? hope your doing well and doing lots of nice things. merry christmas from all of us at home ! :)

love from jeff and family