I walked to the long table spread with food. I was technically not supposed to get food from here - I’m a vegetarian - but there was sometimes food like rice or egg that I could eat. I spotted fried eggs piled up on a tray, and thought to myself, Ah, something familiar! as I selected one and put it on my plate. Seeing as there wasn’t much else I particularly wanted to eat, and I don’t eat much anyway, I walked over to the circle (well, more like a weird oval) of chairs where some of the other girls in my year were eating their breakfast and sat down.
Listening to their conversation - I don’t talk much either - I cut myself a small bit of egg with my fork, as they didn’t have knives, and began to eat. Mmm, delicious! It was actually pretty good. I was about to cut myself another piece when I looked down and gasped with horror. There was a bug in my egg! Gross! Its small black body, tiny legs spreadeagled on the plate, seemed to stare up at me. I stared back, horrified.
I frantically pulled the egg apart, looking for a piece that had no bugs, but quickly found that it was useless. There seemed to be pieces of bug in every bit of egg, even if it was only one body part. For the rest of the meal, I picked at my egg, waiting for someone to say, “Time to get ready!” so that I could just say that I was a slow eater if anyone asked why I had so much food left on my plate. Finally, the moment came, and I scraped the remains of my meal into the bin before going upstairs to get ready.
Later, after we visited the Orang Asli tribe and went on a short boat ride, we went on a short ‘practise’ trek. We walked in more-or-less single file, and I was at the back with China, Rucha, and some others. We were worried about leeches, until Mrs. Dore told us, “The people at the front will get bitten first,” and then added, “don’t tell everyone!” as some people started to dash to the front to tell their friends.
To get past the open part and into the rainforest, we had to cross a log over a small stream. It looked quite precarious, and since I had only eaten a quarter of an egg for breakfast, I was already shaking with hunger and feeling faint and was scared I would slip. Although I wobbled a little on the slippery surface, I didn’t, and made it over safely enough.
As we continued on, splashing through streams, climbing up steep slopes and walking over logs, the feeling worsened, until I felt like I just wanted to be whisked away. I felt so weak and tired that by the time we made it to the waterfall, I just sat down on a rock until it was time to go back. I was a little worried that I would faint, even though I’d never done that before. The instructors and teachers would probably be horrified to discover that I’d barely eaten anything.
If the way there had felt like an hour, the way back only felt like half of that, and soon enough we were boarding the speedboats to go back to the houseboat for lunch. I’ll always remember this experience, and next time I’ll make sure I eat more for breakfast!