After a five leg public transport adventure, Including that of the tapper, I had left the mountains and had found the scorching tropical whether. I was in Pucallpa, and I knew that from here, I could take a local slow boat to Iquitos, the Peruvian Amazonian town.
On arrival, the boat seemed chaotic. People everywhere trying to sell all all sorts of things. Hammocks, which would serve as beds to the crowds of locals for the next 5 nights were literally swinging over, under and into each other. I hung up my hammock, before meeting an Argentinian couple and a Spanish man who had hung mosquito nets and had laid out their camping mats underneath. I left the boat and returned with my own mosquito net, which i hung next to theirs, and set out my mat. We were soon joined by a French Girl, and in no time I felt at ease on this boat. It was certainly good to have a small group in this area which was definitely prone to some lingering fingers.
I didn't expect to see any other Gringos on this boat, as I hadn't seen another for a week, however I was soon to be surprised, when I met an Australian girl, who was accompanied by two Germans. Trying to read the 'Alchemist' in Spanish was put on hold for conversation, and beer drinking, and many adventures exploring the different sections of the boat, including a couple of nights sleeping on the roof under the stars.
The five days flew by, and I was glad that I had chosen to hop into a tuk tuk with Cristobal, 45 of Spain, and Alison, 30 of France. Alison, well travelled, knew of a cheap, floating hostel, which is where we spent the next five days.
Christobal, with a more than interesting life story was on the hunt for a local boat to head North for Ecuador, where he has a cocoa plantation, and Alison was looking for a different boat to Columbia. My plan was to take a different boat west, to another part of Peru, and so we were assuming this was where we would say our goodbyes.
Iquitos was a town full of crazy energy, and none more intense than the owner of our hostel, Marcel. A genuinely creepy and sleazy man, but certainly provided us with some fun partying. In amongst one of our fun filled nights, I noticed a sign on the fridge for a cheap boat. I semi joked to Cristobal and Alison that it would be a good idea to buy the boat and drive it to Ecuador. At the time I thought it was a little bit crazy, however we all put one hand in the middle, and for me, it sealed the deal and there was no turning back.
This boat had been sold, but within two days, we had found our boat. Three gringos entered into the more dodgy area of town, and we found our man, Nixon. The boat was without a roof when we first met, around 10 or 12 feet long. We gave our requirements, and within 24 hours, the roof had been built and the boat was customized for our travel. It was delivered to our hostel, and tied up right beside our room. That night was spent by the three of us, my Australian friend who I has become well acquainted with by now, and a bunch of hostel guests enjoying sitting and drinking in our boat.
The next morning, we rushed around town organized everything necessary for our travel. By about 1pm, sweat dripping of foreheads, we were off. Marcel gave us a great gift, three pillows and two sheets, although he didn't know it, and off putted 'Trucutu' for it's destiny traveling up the Amazon.