Two Khmer Villagers’ Dream – Part 2

(continued from “Two Khmer Villagers’ Dream – Part 1“)

Asnol, my Borneo J.V. partner and chief hunter.
Asnol, my Borneo J.V. partner and chief hunter.

In an earlier blog post (here), I had mentioned we have our own dedicated team of gaharu hunters in Borneo now. Using a strategic joint-venture partnership arrangement, I was able to gain 100% legal, full access to over 500 acres of Borneo jungle land. We even got the local Dato’s blessing.

So what does this translate to? It means I can have as many agarwood trees as I want from this area, and its fully sanctioned. No illegal felling, no smuggling, etc, which is standard practice in Borneo and elsewhere. Contrary to how things are typically done, I prefer to forge strategic partnerships which allow me to get old wild agarwood trees without breaking any laws.

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Two Khmer Villagers’ Dream – Part 1

As most of you may know already, despite Agar Aura being located in Malaysia, most of our staff consists of Khmers (Cambodians), either themselves refugees who fled Pol Pot’s infamous “Reign of Terror”, or their children.

The sweet old lady is actually tough as a boot. Seen here: a gaharu drop-point, where she grilled the hunters. She's not technically one of our staff, but we sure appreciate her pro bono help!
The sweet old lady is actually tough as a boot. Seen here: a gaharu drop-point, where she grilled the hunters. She’s not technically one of our staff, but we sure appreciate her pro bono help!

Whenever Ahmad and Yusof’s mother is asked to share some stories from Cambodia, you can see the sadness in her eyes. She went through a lot when she fled, on foot, from Cambodia to Malaysia. For a whole month, ‘home’ to her had been a grimy tunnel, where she had to hide to make sure she wasn’t being followed.

Earlier this month, when I was there, I met one of the uncles. I noticed that everyone seemed to be yelling at him, even the kids. I’ve never found these folks to be rude, I thought to myself, I wonder why everyone’s yelling at the poor old chap..?

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