To A Recently Discovered Cave

Tera Harmalet
9 min readJan 6, 2021

I woke up at five o’clock in the morning because I had a plan to go to a recently discovered cave. A total of six people, my dad, and his colleagues and I started our trip at 6 AM.

Darkness slowly faded away and our surroundings became clearer and clearer. When you looked at the left and right sides, there were paddy fields. When you looked at the front, there was a view of a highway road where a few people were bicycling. When you looked afar, there were chains of mountains covered by mist. And, a small ball which emits golden red color is emerging from a slightly grey sky. It was like watching a painting. For me who is not an early bird but a night owl, witnessing the sunrise gave me a fresh and wonderful feeling.

We had breakfast in a shop on the road. We had to wait for about an hour and a half in a town because two girls who wanted to come with us were beautifying themselves. Three hours and thirty minutes passed and we were at a village where a young girl who will be our guide was located. The guide asked us to have lunch at her house but we refused because we were late and continued the trip. Although she came with us as a guide, she also had never been to the cave but she is a local and knows the area.

There were many times when we became unsure of where to go next and we were deep in the forest. Many trees have dry and brown leaves. Some trees still have green leaves and some have red but most of them have brown. And, the weather was very hot. Everything was like brown and it made us long for something we don’t even know. Some scenery can give you complicated feelings and it is true.

The road is very bad after all. It was a narrow dusty uneven road with many rocks and the car had to climb a hill. The ground clearance of the car we were in is low so we had to get off the car and walked. Soon, we met a car trying to go down the hill. The cars were in a deadlock. Looking at the situation, the car which was trying to go down the hill had to move backward because after the first car climbing the hill is the second car which came along with us and after the second car is a cliff. Although the car was trying to move backward, it didn’t move backward but rolled forwards. It tried again and moved forwards again and it was about to collide. I don’t know about the drivers but it gave me anxiety even though I was watching from sides. Thankfully, the car was successfully able to move backward and our cars passed that area. It was very close and we were able to heave a sigh of relief later.

The guide said that the driver in the car trying to go down the hill started driving recently and he can’t drive well. Well, it is obvious. My dad was the driver in the first car trying to climb the hill and he said that his knees were shaking and he turned the car’s steering wheel all the way in the opposite direction as an escape if something were to happen. It was a dangerous situation and it made me think that traveling in a wild forest is not an easy job after all.

The cars were moving on a mountain road. The guide told us to look at our skin color. I thought, “Is there something wrong with it?” and when I looked at my skin, it was greenish-yellow. I was surprised. The guide explained that we were on a mountain called “A mountain which changes colors” if you translated it directly. As its name suggests, the colors on the mountain are somehow changed. The ground turned into a color of sunrise, a mix of orange and red. Brown skin turned into yellow and white skin turned into greenish-yellow. As for the reason, nobody knows why. If only the color of the ground was changed, it can be considered pH level or the presence of some metals but the colors of our skins were also changed. When we considered sunlight as the cause, the guide told us that it is not the case because some villagers who went to the mountain at nighttime said about the changes in their skin color. Look like it doesn’t matter it is daytime or nighttime. What a mystery! I had never heard of a mountain which can change colors in my life and I was experiencing it. What an unexplainable feeling given by an incomprehensible phenomenon!

The place we were in was very remote but we saw a few people. There are charcoal mines nearby and people here do agriculture. I think a person who lives in her room most of the time and a person who lives in a very remote place is kind of the same and kind of different. They interact only with three to six people and I am sure both types are weird. lul

Multiple dry bamboo leaves were falling from the sky. It was like a scene in the movie and it made me feel like a cultivator in a Chinese drama. There exists a cave near the bamboo forest. It is a recently discovered cave we were heading towards and finally, we arrived there. From the village to the cave, it takes 6.46 km (4.01 miles).

It is an underground cave so we had to go down into the cave. It was completely dark. We had to use flashlights and our phones’ light to see our surroundings. What we first saw while going down into the cave were teeth-shaped stalactites. It is like dragon teeth you saw in anime. As we continued into the cave, we were all amazed. There were many white rocks which were shining with glitters when flashlights were on them. It is very beautiful and nature is indeed very amazing and wonderful.

We were moving forward in the darkness. Going into the unknown and invisible provoked fear in me and it gave me an adventurous feeling. I was excited and I enjoyed it. Soon, we were wowed again. We saw a large ceiling which is like a tiger’s back. I stared at the ceiling for a while and I was in awe. Again, nature is very splendid and excellent. As we moved forward, it became hotter and hard to breathe because oxygen became lesser. We reached the end of the cave and we were amazed again. We saw a very wide rocky dead-end wall and it made me feel like my existence is very small. I was literally speechless.

Rock formations in the cave are various and I am sure the rocks are not the same type. Some waterfall-shaped formations are shiny with glitters. Some icicle-shaped formations might scare you and some formations have crimson lines in them. Some rocks look like cotton. And, it also gave you a feeling that you are under the sea. If water which came from the ground surface helped in shaping everything here, to have them beautifully shaped, I am sure it took hundreds of years.

I clearly knew that types of rocks are different but I didn’t know what exactly is the difference. I only understood face value and for the first time in my life, I seriously wanted to be a geologist. Knowledge grants us eyes which can see the real value of specific things. I lacked that and it made me not able to estimate the value of the cave. If I had some geological knowledge, at least, I will be able to estimate how old the cave is just by observing the rocks, right? You will never forget the feelings you received for the first time. The cave is very mythical to me. I was in a mythical world for a few hours.

On our way back home, when I saw vast lands and mountain ranges, I thought about battle formations and generals since I finished watching an anime called Kingdom yesterday. It was imprinted in me and it is a great anime.

The sun was setting. Many trees with dry branches seemed like they were shadows and portraying the scenery. It was peaceful but empty. Everything I experienced was left behind like it is nothing at all. It was like it never happened. It was morning a few moments ago, but it was already dark. A day passed too fast. I was watching another painting with an empty mind on my way home. And, I remembered “Last Train Home”, an ending song of JoJo’s bizarre adventures.

People will modify that cave soon. If possible, I want people to leave it in its original state. But, I know that my wish won’t be granted. Among the seven caves I have been to, when it comes to width, this cave is NO. 1 and when it comes to beauty, this cave is NO. 2.

My 2021 started with an adventure. More adventures are warmly welcome.

Jan 6, 2021

Note: I think my writing is a bit bland because I didn’t write much lately.

The photos were taken from phone and they have poor resolution.

A ceiling like a tiger’s back
me
Bling Bling Rock (There are many of them)
Bling Bling Speleothem(There are quite a few of them)

When LED light met high resolution camera:

A ceiling which looks like a tiger’s back
me
me
A stream on the way

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Tera Harmalet

^w^ My Personal Journal ^w^ (Anime+ Games+ Nature+ Animals+ Tech+ Sports+ Folklore) person who loves historical & futuristic themes 💛