It's not true people are the same everywhere, but what about the ignored species? I'm on a Darwinian voyage around the world by plane, bus and thumb, and now in Sumatra, Indonesia, where the contrast of species, including our own, is great, with the most interesting extremes.

The Sumatra butterflies have the strongest wing attachments, hence steady flight in the island's winds, than any encountered around the globe. The chickens, c/o mankind, crossed the ocean to evolve into the sturdiest, best eating in the world, meatier with small fat, and less gamey. The eggs are 20% denser than our American counterparts with a ratio of one medium Sumatra = one extra-jumbo USA. The two-egg omelet I devoured an hour ago was enough for two explorers.

The cook and people in Tuk Tuk village on the volcanic Lake Toba bank are, along with Peruvian Amazonians, the hardiest in the world. They were southbound refuges from early war-torn North Asia, and cannibals among themselves to weed the gene pool. Lake Toba is the seat of the Batak people, with homes like ships turned upside-down and put on stilts. They are the most gentle with the fiercest anatomies anywhere.

This is also the focus, I believe, of a rise of consciousness separate from the dawn of man's climb from Africa into Europe. (Incidentally, one may study at googlemaps 'satellite view' the ocean shelves tapering and joining continents, to surmise the early travels of 'missing links'.) My evaluation of consciousness in Lake Toba is untainted by small text preparation of man's early migration and rise of awareness, but rather from having visited all the continents, and being a sharp student.

It appears the local 6500 orangutan population is the most intelligent of apes, including gorillas and chimpanzees. They are processors, or an offshoot, of a missing human link different from the African one with facial expressions of condescension to be cherished on a jungle path.

The Batak proudly own orangutan and chimpanzee features, with not the natural, long sharp canines of greater cannibalistic Peru, and none of the heavy jaw stock from my own family tree. It's apparent their consciousness arose in a separate Asian branch from the Africa-Europe one, with a different style of thought revolving around anatomy. They generate thoughts from lower on the brain stem, with less capacity to entertain simultaneous concepts like scrambling eggs and swatting flies processed higher in the cerebrum.
A Toba Super-eruption about 70,000 years ago is recognized as one of the earth's largest, and perhaps greatest disaster, and evolutionary factor. The theory holds the event plunged the planet into a decade volcanic winter that resulted in the world's human population being reduced to an estimated 1,000 breeding pairs, creating a human evolution bottleneck.

Today's tranquility, and 3:1 female to male birth ratio, under towering trees and tumbling waterfalls suggests correlative causes with the Peruvian Amazon. In each, an early tribe fled into an impenetrable place: one a volcanic island and the other the thickest rainforest on earth. Each sequestered over the centuries in what evolutionists call 'island isolation'- raiding each others villages for breeding girls and eating the men's heads, squeezing a few years though a malaria sieve, preservative infanticide- where inherited and mutated traits tend to be preserved.

Until scant centuries ago, they also remained separate from the global pace. The result in each locale is royal peoples, and flora and fauna quirks, like the butterfly wings and chicken eggs far removed from the Bell canopy.

This is why one travels.


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