Hot and steamy
2 days in Peru's share of the Amazon. Flew into Puerto Maldonado (mouthful). Take a 2 hour boat ride down the Madre De Dios (Mother of God) a tributary of the mighty Amazon. Our lodge sits on the bank of the river surrounded by jungle. We spend our first afternoon visiting Monkey Island across the river. It should really be called Mosquito Island for obvious reasons. Although you do see monkeys they're blurred by the cloud of mosquitos buzzing in front of your face.It seems they have a taste for Gringo blood. I give silent thanks to the Lord that I'm on antimalarials. We spend the first night on the river trying to spot caymans (miniature alligators) we actually succeed in seeing a few baby ones.
The following day we do a jungle walk. Our guide Victor leads us with his machete which he seems way to comfortable with. This guy clearly knows the jungle and points out various plants, trees, birds, bugs and animals. It's seems the plants here can be divided into two main categories. One category including all plants that allegedly cure all sorts of ailments from diarrhoea to impotence whereas the other category include all plants that will kill you. This place is Alive, yes with a capital 'A'. I have never experienced anything like it. It feel like sweat is constantly poring out of you; as if you're a walking Niagara Falls.
The swim in the lodge's pool at the end of the walk comes as a welcome relief. In the afternoon I go fishing with Victor and his crew although they forget the bait and so it turns into a scenic ride down and back up the river.
We end the day drinking and playing table tennis and pool, still sweating like sumo wrestlers in a sauna. We get up early morning to return to the airport, the jungle thankfully offers us a much cooler day with constant rain accompanying us all the way back to Puerto Maldonado. I loved my very short time in the Amazon but I couldn't live in it. Yeah its hot and steamy, but not in a good way.