As a guy that reads a lot of anthropology, this appeals to me. As a descendant of a long line of fire making monkeys, this appeals to me. As a guy that doesn’t eat a lot of meat…well 2 out of 3 ain’t bad. An interesting note about the Korowai is that they consider the ground to be dirty and defiling to the dead. The only acceptable way to let the dead pass on is to have friends of the family eat the dead. The family doesn’t do it. When the Korowai were forced to bury their dead, they were unable to get beyond their grief at the thought of their loved ones trapped in the cold, dirty earth.
Papua Adventures, the tour group behind the infamous “First Contact” expeditions, offers a 19-day tour of the Korowai region of Indonsia, where the tree-house dwelling and purportedly cannibalistic Korowai people dwell.This area within the Korowai that we will visit are still living a stone age existence. They still use only stone and bone tools. And they still do practice cannibalism in the Korowai area. Don’t worry they won’t kill and eat us. It is ritual cannibalism among themselves and we are outsiders, so there is nothing to worry about.
We will make camp by their tree houses and also be able to witness them in their everyday lives. They will look for sago trees to fell and get the pith out of to eat. We will experience this with them. They will gather sago grubs (which they are crazy about) and eat them. And we can watch as they build fish traps and try and catch small fish from the streams. And the amazing thing about all of this is that they use nothing from the outside world. Everything is made of plants, vines and tree bark.
Really, these are some of the only real “stone age” people left in the world. And I have to tell you that everytime I go into the Kombai and Korowai area, I am deeply touched.