Day 8 Amazon Voyage; Friday - Feb. 15, 2008
This morning we were not able to go out at 6:00 a.m. because it was raining at a pretty good clip. The rain ahead of us looked very heavy. All of us were up and ready to go, so when we found out that we weren’t going we said the crew were wimps. Actually they were smart. We ate breakfast first and then headed out about 8:15. The rain had stopped and the weather was great. I can write this now. Before, I didn’t want to jinx myself. We have been so lucky with weather. People have complained about the heat, but to me it is just a Florida summer day. In fact, actually not as hot, maybe more humid, but not as hot.
At first we went out and looked at some awesome water lilies. They grow beautiful flowers. When people first came to the Amazon Basin, they did not realize the symbiotic relationship between plants and animals. There are beetles that crawl inside the flower and stay the night. In the morning they fly out and go to work pollinating other flowers. Lesson learned was that the first people who took the flowers to grow in other parts of the world lost all of the plants because they didn’t take any beetles with them. The leaves are about five to six feet in width with heavy duty thorns on the underneath.
Next, we headed out for what Robinson called, “An Adventure!” We went down a small creek that let you know what a rainforest is all about. People on Tui Tui’s boat, of course the lead boat, said it was unreal. They would come to a solid wall of limbs and Tui Tui would machete his way through, and then they would hit another solid wall. Of course, when this happened all of the branches fell into the boat and thousands of ants and spiders would crawl madly about. I have decided that the ants are much more of a problem than mosquitoes. Thanks to Tui Tui, we only had hundreds of ants and spiders in our boat. Robinson just doesn’t swing a machete like Tui Tui. Miguel, our cruise leader is a “woose” because he barely helped poor Robinson at all. It was, however, as Robinson said, “An Amazon adventure that we will always remember. We had to turn around after all of that work due to a huge fallen tree. We finally found another way into the black water stream and finally piranha fishing.
We tied up to a tree and set up ready to fish. All of sudden we hear rustling in the trees and here come saki monkeys and one wooly monkey. They eventually climbed right into the boat. One even climbed on my Dad’s back. Quite exciting! We had to move the boat to keep them off. One grabbed my Dad’s fishing pole and had quite the tug of war. The video is quite spectacular if I don’t say so myself. Finally things settled down and we were ready to fish.
It took us a few minutes to get the hang of it but once we did, Dad caught four fish which tied him for second place. In all we caught 37 piranhas. Go us! They tell us that we will have some for dinner tonight. Dad was very pleased with his catch, and I could tell what a wonderful time he is having. I am so glad. Everything has worked out so well to this point.
They are planning a farewell party for tonight which should be fun. The "A once of a lifetime experience!" crew is wonderful.
More to follow,
Tom & Holly