My Holy Grail Episode 1

I take a lot of photos. This is pretty well known. I do however sometimes struggle to upload them all in good time, especially when I have taken so many on a trip and have found it overwhelming. Seeing as it is exactly one year on, I thought now would be an appropriate time to share some of my photos from my trip to Malaysia in October 2015.

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I went out for a couple of weeks for the tail end of my cousins wedding as well as meeting lots of family I had never met.

We had an action packed schedule but managed to see an abundance of nature which was one of my main aims. Malaysia isn’t the first country I would think of when the topic of mushrooms arises, however thinking about the amount of woodland they have in the medium of ‘jungle’ I don’t know why I would think otherwise.

There were pretty mushrooms all around in wooded areas in and around Kota Kinabalu.

The orange guy above was in quite a bizarre place, in a wooded area on Sapi island where I was snorkeling. I had gone for a bit of an island wander after getting bitten just once too many times by a fish on the crease of my arm.  I did not expect to see any mushrooms.

Or this…

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My Holy Grail for the trip however, after reading nature books from a young age and upon relighting this interest whilst researching for my holiday is the Rafflesia.

The Rafflesia is a genus of parasitic flowering plants native to countries in South East Asia. I remember reading about it as a child because it is so large and it smells and looks like rotting flesh. I discovered from the trip that this odor attracts flies and insects which aid in the process of the plant’s pollination.

I went at a time where the Rafflesia were not so abundant, so I had to cheat a little to find it. Tourist traps are set up around houses which have a plant in their vicinity. They charge a very small fee for you to go and see them where they have flowered. We drove past a sign saying ‘Rafflesia 100m away’ and I had to make us stop so I paid for the whole family to go and stare at this strange plant.

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I was momentarily distracted by all the memorabilia I could clutter my house with but I snapped out of it, paid the viewing fee and walked down a short path behind this families house to see something out of The Little Shop of Horrors.

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The different species are so similar in appearance that I am not sure which this is. From some observations and a little googling I believe it is either Rafflesia Keithii or Rafflesia Kerrii.

Look at that. What a magnificent plant. I hope to find one for myself when I go to Malaysia again in January 2017. Watch this space!

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