Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Getting back to the hammock

So I was telling you about the decision to bunk in a cabin rather than sleep alfresco in a hammock aboard the Dejard Vieira. And what a mistake it was. Woulda coulda shoulda. Have you ever had those opportunities of a lifetime that you squander? Not to realize your mistake until it's too late?

That is how I feel about sailing down the Amazon.

This litttle girl was among the experienced locals who knew how "to flex." Have hammock, will travel.

As I said, I suppose it was just as well we chose to book a boat ride only for the few days it took to sail from Manaus to Santarem, rather than the much longer journey from Manaus to the port city of Belem at the Atlantic Ocean. Upon arrival, we hunkered down in Santarem for a few days before hitching a ride back to Manaus on a small aircraft that gave us a breathtaking view of the jungle from above. So all was not lost.

The sights, sounds and, as always, the people we met on that trip, as well as all of the other precious travel gems that fell in our laps while in the Amazon, were a gift. We did utimatley have a chance to sleep in a hammock deep in the jungle for days on end, under the watchful gaze of a portrait of the British Royal Family, no less

And did I tell you we fished for and ate our catch of piranha, shared table scraps with a tapir, and swam in Amazon tributaries we later found out were home to crocodiles? Or were they alligators? Or caimans? Aaahhh, I never can remember the difference.

And I expect if one had taken a bite out of me, it wouldn't much matter what it was called, eh?

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