Titans in Caves
For 20 members of House Titan, July was an exciting month as they got to go on a trip to Vietnam. This was their prize for winning House in 2018. However, nobody knew exactly what to expect. For animator Max from the Philippines, it was better than what he was expecting. “I was expecting sightseeing, a little bit of activities but I didn’t expect it to be that intense.”
The intense experience he was talking about was the cave adventures they had. “I’ve been to caves before in the Philippines. Usually they smell like guano and we had to crawl and climb. This one, the cave was huge. We can walk around. It was chilly. No guano!” The lucky Inspideans got to visit four different caves – Paradise Cave, Dark Cave, Phong Nha Cave and Nuoc Nut Cave – all in the Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. “Nuoc Nut Cave was the first cave we got to explore. It’s clean. We enjoyed it especially the swimming inside [the cave which] I never expected that. The water was cold,” Max added.
For Sam, the animator from Indonesia, the best cave was the Paradise Cave where we had to climb [the slopes to get to it].
“It was a paradise. It was so pretty. All the structures inside were so magnificent.” Sam said that the cave was so long, to explore it would require the use of special equipment. “I’m still mesmerized that there is a cave that big inside a mountain. It made me think about the hollow earth and stuff. That’s quite amazing,” he adds.
“Well aside from losing a toenail, I think the experience was educational,” said Khadijah, the Malaysian animator. For her, the highlight of the trip was ziplining at the Dark Cave. Since most of them didn’t really go inside the Dark Cave, which requires being in a swimsuit or go naked, the zipline became the most outstanding thing. “You pretty much go gliding across this river. The sights [around you] as you’re gliding past were just incredible. It made me feel like a majestic eagle,” she said.
There were so many outstanding moments for Ain, the coordinator from Malaysia. “This was my first time going outside of the country. Plus it was fully sponsored!” she said. “The most exciting cave for me was the Phong Nha Cave because [to get there] we need to take a boat ride for almost half an hour. The first time the boats moved together, it was like us going to war. The view throughout the river was so nice and awesome.”
Kazim, the Pakistani Business Improvement Specialist, remembered one amazing thing. “The best moment about going to the caves was basically when you would come near a cave opening, you could feel the coolness in the air. We were six kilometers in the jungle in the hot sun and as soon as we were close to it, we could feel the coolness.”
From that time Sam screamed his heart out because of spiders to the little kid who bossed around CJ, it seemed that a good time was had by all. Obviously, you just had to be there.