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I’d always wanted to go for rafting. Rafting is number 19 in my Things To Do List. Due to some reasons I couldn’t make it till Vita posted a rafting invitation on CS. Right away I signed up for the trip, though I hadn’t known yet the full details of the trip; what river, how to go there, and what to bring.

After some days only I got to know the details from Vita. It would be on Cicatih River in Sukabumi. However due to the continuous rain in the previous days, one day before the Day, Cherokee, the rafting operator, informed Vita that to take Cicatih river was too dangerous. They said the debit of water was high and lot of logs were drifting on the river. So instead of Cicatih, we took Cimandiri River, which was only 9 km long or 4 km shorter than Cicatih River.

Saturday, 19th June 25 participants met at the meeting point, Senayan Gate 1, where the bus has been waiting for us. The schedule was to depart at 8 AM. We arrived at Cherokee meeting point in Sukabumi at noon. Lunch was ready to be served. It was high carbs nasi goreng, which I think was served purposely as source of energy for us to row on the wild river. After depositing our precious belonging – camera, mobile phones, money, etc. – and our dry clothes, we were taken by mikrolet to Kampoeng Jeram Resort. We had a little briefing and received the safety equipments we had to put on, like life jacket and helmet. We also got our most important equipment, OAR! We were divided into 5 groups and each group had one guide. I was in the first group along with Rheden, Albert, Daniela and Prita. And our group had 2 guides, Yono and Noval (I’m not so sure whether the latest is the correct name).

Not long after we left the shore. I said to myself that this was great and was super cool! I couldn’t stop smiling, laughing, and screaming a little sometimes… Well… maybe also quite a lot. Often some drips of water of the milk-brown river got into my mouth. What to do? You can’t scream nor laugh with your mouth closed, can you?

Anyway… let’s get back to the journey… when our rafts entered relatively calm water, our guide told us that we might want to jump out of the raft and drift away. I was a bit of reluctant at first, but seeing Rheden and Albert, my team mates, doing so made me yearn to jump in the brown God-knows-what-contains-in-it river. The temptation was much bigger than thinking of what kind of dirt and things carried by the water. Our guide, Yono, told us that the local people had a custom to put newly-born baby placenta in a banana trunk and throw it in the river. He explained it to us after Rheden found a banana trunk with a hole on the river which cover had lost.

It was great to drift away on the river. I drifted away for some time until my my guides pulled me on to the boat. Fortunately I didn’t bumped to any stone while drifting away. My team mates were not so lucky. Their behinds hit stones several times. Now we know the reason why we have to lie on our back when we drift away on a river. Our buttock has more fat tissue than our front body part. If we lie on our stomach our poor shinbone must have hit the stone. Ouch!! We also have to look forward. There’s a good reason for this; you do not want to crash on a stone head first, do you?

At the finish point we were picked up by the same mikrolet which took us to the Kampoeng Jeram Resort to enjoy es klamud (coconut ice), Sundanese dinner and massage.

Once everybody has finished having a shower, we were heading for Jakarta. The road was so jammed. Some people were sleeping and some others were playing game. The one who lost had to shout on the window. They had to shout “saya brengsek (I’m a jerk)”, “saya gila (I’m crazy)”, or “saya mau kawin” (I want to get married) and other crazy things like erotic dance. Ha! But it doesn’t like what you think it is.

Reached home around 11 pm. Tired, sleepy, but couldn’t wait till the next rafting trip!!

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