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 Post subject: Borneo Dispatches #84: What happened to "Borneo Dispatches"?
PostPosted: December 5th, 2016, 2:49 am 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
Posts: 3179
Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
Hi all,

just a quick update for those of you wondering what happened to my Borneo Dispatches. I haven't been doing a lot of dedicated herping in over a year. I still hit the forest one night per week or so, but I've developed a bum knee (possibly requiring replacement) and can't walk too far. My job has hijacked much of my jungle time in the past two years, and I travel more than before (usually to herpless places). Roadcruising doesn't seem to yield as much as it once did, thanks to human encroachment along all my favorite roads, and I've also gotten a bit frustrated with herp photography - I just can't seem to reach the level of my heroes such as Kurt Orion (look him up on this forum and get ready to trash your camera) and often don't even take my Pentax into the woods anymore, leaving the photography to my companions. (I still enjoy shooting carnivorous plants, but let's face it, that's like birding: a retirement pastime for fat people with bad knees.)

Of course, as soon as I started leaving the camera at home, I started to find really cool stuff left and right, such as the rarely seen and decidedly odd-looking Borneo Narrowmouth Toad (Gastrophrynoides borneensis). A few months ago, we took only the third set of photos ever of a live one ... and then the fourth, and the fifth, because we found THREE of the beasties over the course of as many weeks this summer! What to do, what to do ... bring the camera and find nothing, or leave it at home and miss out on good photos of rare animals?

So far my depressing report. But as my mom always says, everything is good for something: my trick knee shackling me to the house is a mighty boon for my writing. I'm almost 20.000 words into my Borneo book (*), and hope to finish by 2018. The maddening thing about the island is that there's ALWAYS something to see - herps in the rain, birds in the sun - so there's never any downtime for writing. But thanks to my geriatric knee, I now get more downtime than I would like to spend :-)

Cheers from Taiwan's north coast,

Hans
(*) Current working title "Python Soup and Kobold Monkeys - An Amateur Naturalist in Borneo". Yes, it's corny, but I just cannot come up with anything more elegant/snazzy/catchy/etc. Please let me know if you have a better idea - the second-most important element of any book is the title :)


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #84: What happened to "Borneo Dispatch
PostPosted: December 5th, 2016, 11:15 am 
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Joined: June 7th, 2010, 7:57 pm
Posts: 144
Location: Davis/Santa Cruz
Great to hear that you're still herping Hans!
I joined the forum back in the twoton days and loved getting introduced to new species in all of the international posts. However your Taiwan posts and the "Borneo dispatches" series in particular were my favorites due to your photos and incredible narratives. Really looking forward to the book!
-Elliot


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #84: What happened to "Borneo Dispatch
PostPosted: December 7th, 2016, 6:06 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
Posts: 3179
Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
Thanks very much for the kind words, Elliot! Nice to know you liked the stuff! :-)


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #84: What happened to "Borneo Dispatch
PostPosted: December 11th, 2016, 9:30 pm 
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Joined: June 12th, 2010, 9:28 am
Posts: 569
Location: Monterey Peninsula, CA
You rest that knee up! You will need it to show me all the herps around Kuching in six weeks.

I'm glad to hear that you are getting some writing done, but sad to hear that it's because you are not out there enjoying the herps.

John


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #84: What happened to "Borneo Dispatch
PostPosted: December 12th, 2016, 6:56 am 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
Posts: 3179
Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
Thanks, John! :-)

Ribbit wrote:
You rest that knee up! You will need it to show me all the herps around Kuching in six weeks.

I'm glad to hear that you are getting some writing done, but sad to hear that it's because you are not out there enjoying the herps.

John


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #84: What happened to "Borneo Dispatch
PostPosted: December 13th, 2016, 4:26 am 
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Joined: June 12th, 2010, 3:08 pm
Posts: 403
Location: Pasadena, CA or Mission, TX
Your photography is just fine, don't let other people's work discourage you. Kurt does decent work but his flash is the softest lighting ever to render a photo subject colorless (I know you'll probably read this Kurt, and I am mostly kidding). Sorry to hear about your knee, but glad to hear the writing is going well.

-Gene


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #84: What happened to "Borneo Dispatch
PostPosted: December 21st, 2016, 10:28 am 

Joined: February 28th, 2014, 12:10 am
Posts: 119
Hi Hans,

I love your pictures, there's absolutely nothing wrong with them! The recent Boiga drapeizii green form was amazing. I also have a dip at the moment (is that correct English?): very sick mother and other issues. It happens. You'll be back and so will I. All the best, Johan


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