It’s the end of 2012, and the Year of the Durian has officially come to a close. One year, 12 months, 52 weeks and 366 days (it was a leap year!) of durian all the time. Will my brain ever stop revolving around durian?
I secretly hope not, because I love durian. It was a really amazing year. I’m proud of what we have done, but I have to admit that we couldn’t have done it without the help of dozens of people who took time out of their lives to spend it with us. There are many, many people who helped us both on our project and
in the little day to day details of living and traveling abroad. From people who gave us rides when we’d gotten dropped off at the wrong place to durian vendors that passed us a few free durians when no one was looking, I
couldn’t possibly mention all the kind people because that would be about the most
boring blog post ever.
Here are just a few honorable mentions:
- Dr. Ridwani, the first durian expert who got us started. Indonesia
- Dr. Songpol Somsri, who took time out of his busy schedule to help a couple of noobs. Thailand
- The folks at Sunshine International, who gave us a great tour and a boost of confidence. Thailand.
- Birdee, who taught us about wild durians. Thailand
- Penang’s King of Durian, Lim Kok Leon, who gave us our first taste of Malaysian durian. Malaysia
- Tina Chong, who let us stay overnight in her durian orchard and accompany her to see the distribution process. Malaysia.
- The Malaysian Nature Society, for a terribly fun and culturally enlightening trip. Malaysia.
- Eddie at Raub Durian Orchard, for being a really nice guy. Malaysia.
- Ms. Salma Idris of MARDI, for doing her PhD on durian. That is really awesome. Malaysia.
- Mr. Tri Minh and Nguyen Phy Chong at Dona Techno Durian Factory. Vietnam
- Virgilio Loquias, for a great tour and our first taste of graveolens. Philippines
- The Eng family of the Kayan tribe, for giving us a quick peek of life upriver. Malaysia
- Anthony Lamb, for hooking us up with some really great durians. Malaysia
- Voon Boon Hoe, for sharing his love of jungle durians. Malaysia
- Linda, our ever patient translator and guide. Indonesia
- Buncao, the WWF director who helped us find durio testudinarum. Indonesia
- Mr. Chang of Bao Sheng Durian Farm, for teaching us the art of loving durian. Malaysia
This list will only continue to grow, because even though the year is officially over we’re not by any means over durian. I’m certainly looking forward to another durian-filled year! Here’s to 2013, a year without labels and plenty of good durian.