Amazon Adventure Part 3 - Hammock Sloth

Trip Start Jan 20, 2004
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Trip End Feb 01, 2005


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Flag of Brazil  ,
Tuesday, April 13, 2004

It didnīt take long to get back into hammock hanging mode on the boat. In six days I managed to turn into a total sloth. I could stay in my hammock all day and all night and never come down (I hung my hammock high up) if it was possible. We all tried to get other people to go to the toilets for us as it was highly inconvenient and a hassle to have to get out of your hammock.

We had a little posse happening, which was lucky, as the tickets that Shapira procured for us were cheaper but dodgier as it required boarding our boat pirate style from another boat and we couldnīt hang our hammocks on the boat early to get a good spot. Luckily I had met Grant and Mike at my hotel who were also going on the same boat and had paid R$48 more than us for official tickets and could board the boat first to hang 7 hammocks. I went with Grant and secured our spot and then Grant and Mike took all our backpacks and put them onboard too.

We waited for ages after boarding boat number 1 at this dodgy little port to take off for our mid river crossing. After 3 hours of wishing we were hanging in our cosy hammocks, we took off and ended up just boarding our boat while it was still moored. There was a frantic rush of people running to hang their hammocks and we just sat back smugly with all our gear already in place.

All day every day we attempted to crawl out of bed for breakfast. This boat was the deluxe and even had a proper dining table which had serviettes, toothpicks and some sauces to boot. At lunch we got salad as well and a juice and in the evening we had dessert, which was a chunk of jam in a plastic shot glass covered in cream. It doesnīt sound as appealing as it actually was though and I happily volunteered to eat others for them (searching for my sugar highs).

Nighttimes were spent on the upper deck hanging around the bar listening to the same Brazilian CD over and over again. Although the bar was open until 1am I never made it up that late. Even though all I did was sleep, read and rest during the day, I had to go to bed early.

I managed to see a dolphin do a perfect Seaworld stunt, arching through the air. It was a sight to remember, but it looked more grey than pink to me.

We were on the boat over Easter and when shopping for supplies for the boat, Kylie, Trudi, Grant, Mike and I had all bought ourselves Easter eggs so that Easter Bunny could visit. I went a little overboard (as I tend to when chocolate is concerned) and bought a big egg and a little bunny as well. In Brazil they mostly have big cellophane covered eggs with other chocolates inside. In the shops they hang from hooks from netting suspended over the walkways. We only managed to find one type of little bunny and there were no packets of eggs like we get back home. I had been looking for a bag of little eggs to give to the kids, but since I didnīt find any, there was no chocolate for them.

As soon as I woke up on Easter Sunday I started hoeing into my egg. I skipped a lovely, appetising cracker for the delights of Easter egg and made sure that I had enough for breakfast the following day too!

I also woke up to find two big skanky, pus filled blisters on my arm. I think that they are from a mosquito called poto or something like that. They were really gross, but I wasnīt the only one. Kylie and Trudi had it in Manaus and Grant got it too. The whole boat trip Kylie, Trudi and I were known as skankies or slappers depending on the mood of our Israeli or English buddies - nicknames we easily became accustomed to.

Iīm almost a bit ashamed to say it, but I hardly saw any scenery as I was hanging in my hammock and my view was obstructed by other hammocks and the ceiling. We did pass through jungle and plains, cliffs and flats. It was quite nice and relaxing, but it was also relaxing in the hammock.

After 6 nights and 6 days on the boat, we were so happy to finally get off in Tabatinga, the Brazilian part of the triple frontier and move on to newer pastures that didnīt include swinging side by side.

Things I learned
* I want to be a hammock sloth
* Not to eat too much for lunch and dinner when all you are doing is snoozing - it leaves a big rice knot in your stomach
* There is always someone to laugh with on travels
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