Published: February 10th 2012February 10th 2012
After our amazingexperience of the Inca Trail we continued our trip to our last destination on Peru... Usually you say last but not least but in this case I´m afraid it was so.
We arrived at the airpost and as soon as the door opened a guy called our names, he helped with our bags and then he escorted us out to our guide Luis. Luis had a friend with him, Marden and he said that he would join us on our expeditions in the Peruvian jungle.And why not, the more the merier... We went to our hotel for the night and in the morning this friend of our guide came to take us to Belen floating Market. The place smelled very bad. We had to breathe through our mouth but the smell was normal bearing in mind all the things that were on display. All kinds of raw meats and fish and vegies even exotic potions and drinks, skulls of wild animals and their skins etc. After that we took a peke-peke boat and had a round of the floating city and we were amazed by the lifestyle of the people there. The river that their houses float in is Ittaya river and that river is their toilet, clening up place, throwing away place and washing up place, all in one... The houses is mainly a wooden basic structure bearing the wooden house covered by a roof made of dried palm leaves divided in the middle and overlayed on top of each other. They were a single space with partitions to form rooms a piece of wood to lead you to the toilet away from the basic structure and another room that was the kitchen. For us it was interesting to see that some peolpe still leave in conditions like that. So far so good...
After this short trip to Belen we were transfered to our accomodation for the next 3nights/4days. We went to a local family house in the Ukayali river set up a tent in one of the ´rooms´and that was our private space. Basically we were staying with this couple that took care of our catering and transport and the two guides. We dared to wash ourselves in the all-in one river but felt no cleaner after that. Our clean smell also attracted the millions of mosquitos that attacked us mercilessly. We went to sleep very early to avoid the mosquitos.
When we woke up we were presented with a note of our guide explaining that he abandoned us to take the help-cook to the neighbooring town coz she was feeling poorly and he had to care for her coz she was under his responsibility.... we were wondering under whose responsibility we were... Anw ok he took a running jump for which ever reason but he has also failed to provide the remaining friend of his, with a schedule explaining what to do with us. The poor other guy asked us what we wanted to do and ofcourse we had no idea...From then on basically we just took a 2-3 hr boat ride once a day if we were lucky two boat rides in the Ukayali and Maranõn rivers to discover the wildlife in the area other than that we were bored to death, dozing off on the hammocks and beeing attacked by mosquitos. It doesn´t sound bad but believe me it was horrible. We payed enough money for this tour and we got 0 service from the provider. The poor couple we were staying with and Marden did everything they could to make the best out of it but lack of communication and organisation were obvious.
However though the highlights of this adventure were the amazing food ´mamma´made, the small caymans Raul brought us home to see and the baby Boa that was caught in one of the neighbooring villages and we got to touch.
Our bad luck in Iquitos doesn´t stop here coz once we arrived in Iquitos town and in need of clean clothes we washed everything unaware of the fact that our flight to Lima was in that evening and not the following morning as we thought. We packed our wet clothes and set off to the airport. We did try to dry them under the hand dryers in the ladies room but with not much luck. For ourmisfortune, our flight to Lima arrived with 2 and a half hrs delay and our connecting flight was on last call when we arrived. We did our best to appear at the gate as instructed by our flight attendant coz the connecting flight was waiting for us but... no!!! It took us literally 15´to be at the gate going all the round through passport, security and immigration control coz they wouldn´t just open the transit door for us but we still didn´t make it. They got us to sign a paper that said: Arrived late at the gate and told us we were flying the following afternoon. You can imagine our reaction.. With this new arrangement we would have also have missed the connecting flight from Sao Paulo to Manaus but luckily there has been some light in the tunel and we managed to change that with no charge...
We had to spend 17 hrs in Lima airport, we were lacking sleep and clean clothes for the day coz our baggage was checked in from way before plus in it were our wet clothes waiting to be hunged to dry we were offered nothing from the airlines and we had another 7 hrs trip to Manaus to start our new adventure right upon arrival... The 6days/5 nights Mamori Survival in the jungle...
Who said life was easy right????
I have to say though that this experience will stay with us, not nostalgicaly, but it will certainly be remembered