Fast cars slow banks

Trip Start Oct 01, 2009
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed
A minibus and my smelly clothes

Flag of Guyana  ,
Wednesday, March 24, 2010

This blog is about Guyana in it's entirety.  Firstly, it is a very beautiful country and the people are actually very friendly....not what I was expecting at all.  The only problem is that it is a very frustrating country and I had been there twice due to the first time I missed my plane.  I decided to return to Manaus for a short while as I wanted to go to the jungle.  I missed my plane as Guyanan banks are stuck in the sixties....They have queues for just about everyting and a hell of a lot of paper work!

At the border crossing in Bonfim/Lethem there was a guy working there called Pugsly; this made me laugh somewhat and I am not sure he was the most happy of people so I did not discuss it with him.  He told me to fill out a form and I said can I use his pen........."I am using it", He said
So I looked for mine, which I finally found and when looking up at Pugsly seeing that he had finished with it.....I figured he must have had a few stolen from him and was not prepared to do it again

From Lethem I needed to get a minibus through the jungle which was kind of cool but bloody scary at the same time.  The Guyanans do not understand brake!  They do understand the wheel and it instils fear into the passangers at the time, whom are mainly Brazilian gold diggers.....there is plenty of gold in Guyana and Brazilian companies. There are also women who go there; they are also gold diggers but of a different variety. 

The Jungle road has so many pot holes and bumps that I do not understand how the buses survive.....but they do.  The whole journey is a real nightmare, however, as there is a section in the jungle that closes until 4 in the morning, then there is a boat crossing that starts at 6 am, THEN there is a bridge just before Georgetown that is not open until 3 pm in the afternoon. This is part of the reason why I missed my initial flight!!!!

My second flight I left 2 days early from Manaus....this does not help in Guyana - the earlier you are the more they will make you wait around.  I was still on the same time scale when leaving the border as I was the first time.  This is half due to buses late from boa vista but in the border I arrived at 8 pm and the passport control closed at 6.30 pm, therefore I had to wait in Lethem.  Then there is a regular bus service that leaves everyday at 10 am...........oh no not on Wednesday or Saturday ( This is a little my fault for not looking).  So I found a minibus company "Yeah we will go at midday"......................8 pm arrived and I was livid but on my way to Georgetown nonetheless!  Now, do you remember me saying that Guyanans drove extremely fast, well this time I had the one that ate leaves and nothing else (basically he was the sloth of Guyanans).   He even did not stop at the closed bridge because by 12.45 pm it had opened that day.  My flight is at 3 (Check in closes 2.50pm), and the airport is 45 mins in a taxi OR 45 mins in the bus to the junction, and another 15 mins in a taxi.  I had no choice in the matter, he chose the latter for me!

We rocked up at the junction, I saw a guyana taxi with "Lucky" on each wing mirror.  I knew I was going to get the flight.  I asked him "you are lucky?"......he said "Yeah Maaaaaaaaaaaaan"!!!  The time approached 1.40 pm and I was standing in the queue.  The lady did not tell me I was too late so I plonked my bag on the scale and smiled sweetly!  :)

On the plane from Trinidad (a stop over) I had a couple sitting next to me....this was not for long as they felt there was more space at the back.  Now bear in mind that I had not washed for about 3 days and had been travelling at speeds of up to 3 miles per hour in the swealtering heat!!! Say no more.  Even my dear mother did not hesitate to indicate the putrid smell that was emanating from my body!!!

I am home and feel like I have had a wonderful trip. I will keep it in memory until that inevitible metophorical bus comes to mow me down (I just hope not in Guyana) and will cherish every second I have on this planet as now I know more and more of it.  I really do hope that I am able to view the rest some day, and will encourage anyone to do the same.  It is beautiful and should not be missed!

Thank you

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