Back from the Jungle
Four o’clock Saturday morning I was woken up by banging on my door. Time to get up for our 5 am boat ride to the city of Iquitos where we catch our plane to Lima.
That was 38 hours ago and I have yet to sleep in a bed. The few hours of in-and-out plane sleep provided me just enough rest to function in a semi-delusional state. It’s Sunday at 6pm right now, and I have two more hours until I allow myself to go to bed for the night. Just enough time to write some incoherent, misspelled sentences about our crazy rainforest adventure.
Before I show you some AWESOME jungle and animal photos, I need to break down my living accommodations with you.
I am by no means a prima donna, but sleeping in open air cubicles with bats perched on the beams above your head, pooping like birds on anything below…is a little different.
The bug nets protected us from mosquitos, bats, bugs, snakes, and anything else that may have taken interest in us. They were rather womb-like, actually. I understand now why dogs like the small enclosure of their kennels – it felt like that thin, nylon-protected asylum was impenetrable.
I am so grateful that I never have to get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, because the outhouses where a dark walk away. With no electricity everything gets dark around 5:30. Oil lamps glow lightly, casting a feint illumination along the narrow paths, but it isn’t enough. And you may want to know who you are going to the bathroom with…
One guest found a snake hanging around the toilet. I had a bat swoop across my feet as I was squatting for a little relief. And then there are the bugs and spiders. Living in the potty “hole”, swarming all over the toilet seat. Greeting you on the hard, dirt floor. You really learn to get used to it. What I never quite got used to was eliminating in a totally open, ceiling-less stall. You feet so exposed.
Don’t forget to wash your hands after you go to the bathroom, with river water. The same water we are NOT supposed to drink or brush our teeth with because of the parasites. (how does that work?)
Showers may have been the most interesting experience. There was only one temperature: freezing. Which was curious since the outside temperature was always so hot. This water was also from the river so I had to be careful not to accidentally allow it to drip in my mouth. The last thing I needed was to have explosive diarrhea in the communal, noise-enhancing outhouse.
Do I need to point out that there was plenty of room for someone to perch under the spaced floorboards for a shower show?
So, do you think you could have handled it? I actually thought living like this (for an extremely limited amount of time) was amazing. Exhilarating and fun. Insane and creepy.
But, mostly, gorgeous. Can you imagine having this view outside your “window” (slash hole)…
More cool photos to come! I am SO, SO glad to be back with my sweet babies and all of you!