When the Kath is away...
Central and South America - 2005
About Me (2)
Costa Rica (2)
Kath's Confessional (4)
The Weird and the Wonderful (1)
Viva Mexico! (8)
* Can someone give me a kick in the arse?
* The Mighty Jungle - Day 7
* The Mighty jungle - Day 6
* The Mighty Jungle - Day 5
* The Mighty Jungle - Day 4
* The Mighty Jungle - Day 3
* The Mighty Jungle - Day 2
* The Mighty Jungle - Day 1
* Preparing for the Jungle
* From the Mountains to the Jungle
* Iīm Hiiiikinī in the Rain... Quilotoa Crater to Chugchilan
* Horsing Around Chugchilan
* Through the Clouds to Chugchilan
* Half the fun is getting there - Saquisili
* A Dog Called Quito (and a city too...)
* Of Showers, Monsters and Monkeys
* Beach Bummers in Puerto Viejo...
* Costa Rica entry-turned-rant
* Learning to dive in Utila
* Leaving Guatemala
June 18, 2005
The Mighty Jungle - Day 7
We woke up to the sounds of Jhon, Angel and Andres hard at work. Instead of having the canoe disappear with the masses of rainwater, it was now stranded as the river had receded quite a lot during the night. It took them a small eternity to get the heavy canoa back down to the water... All that was missing now was to have it sink, though I didnīt dare talk about that possibility for fear of it coming true...
After packing up camp we reluctantly got on our way back, picking up a bunch of Hoaranis on our way. I guess they were going to "town", a small grocery store where the river meets the road to Coca. As we prepared to set off from the Hoarani settlement, we had engine trouble for the umpteenth time on our trip... First the rain got into the motor, then the starter rope broke, and now the engine just simply refused to start. As a result we missed our bus back to Coca, but were lucky enough to catch another one not too long after we arrived, several hours delayed.
After three hours on an unpaved road, with the great combination of constantly sweaty skin and open windows letting the dust in, none of us had ever been so covered in dirt in our lives... Thankfully, Max was staying overnight in Coca, so we got to take a shower in his room to refresh ourselves before the nightbus to Quito. It was one of the best showers of my life :-)
In the evening, while waiting for our bus, Max, Silje and I went out for a drink and some food with Jhon and Angel. In order to leave the jungle with a bang, we ordered some typical food... Being a vegetarian, Silje had a great excuse not to eat, but Max and I were proud to gorge on fried maggots (3-4cm long and tasting of pungent, smoked cheese) as well as the delicious meat of a wild "prairiedog" like animal, smoked and boiled. We washed it down with a sketchy, homemade yucca-beer, which wasnīt particularly tasty.
The nightbus back to Quito was the stuff of nightmares... I nearly froze to death going from the hot jungle to 4,000m altitude in a bus with windows that wouldnīt close... Cockroaches were crawling all over my stuff, and we went through no less than 4 passport & luggage checks... One officer in particular took an unusually long time checking our passports. Unlike other officers his questions were not "where are you traveling to/from" and so on, but rather more personal...
Police: Sooooo... two girls from Norway, huh!
Does he really think itīs that easy? Or does he figure that he has nothing to lose and everything to win??
Since I didnīt sleep a second on the bus, I had plenty of time to think... I really would have liked to spend more time in the jungle. I found it a fascinating place, and it made me feel good. I arrived suffering from a cold that had lasted for weeks, and cuts that wouldnīt heal. After two days in the jungle I was completely healed - like my body sped up its healing process. If I could do my trip again I would choose not to visit the Hoarani community, or any other community for that matter. I donīt want to contribute to the negative tourism impact any more than necessary. However, I wouldnīt hesitate in recommending the company we went with, River Dolphin Tours, to anyone looking for a slightly different jungle experience. I had a fabulous trip!
Posted by kvabo on June 18, 2005 05:08 PM
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