Friday, January 19, 2007

Woman Found After 18 Years in Jungle

Reuters reported yesterday that a Vietnamese woman has been found.

A woman has been returned to her home in Vietnam's Central Highlands 18 years after she went missing as an eight-year old girl tending cows near the Cambodian border, her father told a newspaper on Thursday.

I love the British term, "went missing," as though the eight-year old girl decided to disappear. Canadians say that too. But the little girl didn't go missing. She probably just got lost. By accident and not on purpose.

Policeman Ksor Lu long believed that his daughter had been eaten by a wild animal until last Saturday when he was told that loggers had found "a forestman" at a village in Cambodia's province of Ratanakiri.

Lu arrived and "recognized his daughter from the first sighting" even though her body was blackened and she had long hair down to her legs and could not speak, according to the account in the Vietnam Rural Today newspaper.

It's amazing to think of an eight-year old girl being able to survive alone in a jungle full of wild animals. Where did she stay, and how did she find enough food to keep herself alive that long?

But maybe the time she had spent caring for her family's cattle taught her what plants to eat and how to avoid the dangers of the jungle.

Lu said that at first it was difficult bringing her back to normal life because she resisted showering, wearing clothes or using chopsticks, fending him off and shouting and crying.
Four days later she started cooperating, Lu said.

"It is not easy indeed but life is waiting ahead for her."

This little girl, now 26, has a family to love her and teach her again how to make her way among people. However difficult, life is still good.


Anonymous said...

Wow! What else can I say to that story. I thought it was pretty incredible that the little boy who had been missing for 4.5 years was found alive, but this is even more amazing.

In either case, however, their lives will be forever changed and they both have a lot to work through.

Mike's America said...

Bizarre story. Kind of reminds me of Greystoke, the legend of Tarzan.

SkyePuppy said...


A Burroughs fan! Nobody says "Greystoke," unless they've read the book(s).

You're a rare breed indeed.

The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

I was thinking the same as Mike...but I wonder if Mike's merely referring to the movie by the same name...

Nevertheless, I read all 24 Bantam books, growing up. I absolutely love Burrough's storytelling; and I love John Clayton, Lord Greystoke. There is no movie or tv series that has ever portrayed Tarzan as he is in the book. I actually think the 70's cartoon series comes the closest out of all of them.

For some reason, the spirit of the stories always reminds me of the same spirit as Casablanca. Not enough time to explain that one...

SkyePuppy said...


My grandfather had all of the Burroughs books, and I read them all in high school. I liked the Mars books the best, followed by Pellucidar and then Tarzan. But I'd hate to have the Mars books made into movies. The whole giant bug thing would bother me too much. Best to keep them in book form.