23 May 1931 / Sumatra, Indonesia

I still do not regret parting ways with the rest of the group. There are certain failures in a guide's character that I simply cannot abide, and constant, amelodic humming is one of them.

I will admit that being alone in the jungle poses more challenges than I had estimated. While I was able to fashion an extremely useful and fetching hat from the broad leaves that abound in the forest almost immediately, finding adequate water has proven much more difficult. I can survive by licking vines, but it is not ideal.

I have located a ficus tree, and have found that, by mashing pulp of the fruit and then rolling it in dirt, I can create a reasonable approximation of a fig newton. Again, it enough to keep me going, but I would prefer a more varied diet.

In an attempt to branch out, I broke a cardinal rule in wilderness survival: I ate some strange fruits that I could not identify. I reasoned that they must have been edible because I saw evidence that orangutans had passed through the area and eaten them only a few hours prior.

My stomach hurt very much. The experience led me to conclude that one of two things is true: either there are some things that orangutans can digest and humans cannot, or the orangutans did not actually eat the fruit but had staged the scene to make it look like they had, in an act of deliberate deception. I would prefer to think that the former is true, not only because it allows me to maintain my positive worldview, but also because, eventually, I may need the orangutan's help to find my way back to Lhokseumawe.