South America Day 64 - Cuyabeno Reserve

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South America » Ecuador » East » Cuyabeno Reserve
March 13th 2019
Published: March 16th 2019
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Today we are going to a local village where we will pay an indigenous family to show us how they live. Inflation in the village is obviously rife, as the price has gone up 25% since we booked.

After breakfast and a cold shower, we set off in our canoe again. It takes 2 hours to reach the village. On the way we see dolphins, sloths, 4 species of monkeys, bats, parrots, toucan, hawks and hummingbirds.

Once in the village we are taught to make yucca bread. First we go into the jungle to dig up the tubers, then we grate them into a mini canoe, dry, sieve and cook the resulting ‘flour’ like a pancake. Our guide has brought a tuna salad to eat it with. There’s also fried yucca, plantain and a selection of fruits I’ve never seen before.

Then it’s back to the lodge in our canoe. On the way we see stinky turkeys, vultures and falcons. I say ‘we’ – the old man has consumed his body weight in yucca bread and sleeps for much of the journey.

After lunch, another canoe ride is scheduled. I decide 7 hours in 2 days is my canoe quota and opt out, spending the afternoon with a book on the balcony instead. After sunset, I try to read on my bed. The room has 2 small lamps so is quite dark. I have the cunning idea of rotating the lamps so they both face my bed. This has an advantage (I can read) and a disadvantage (they attract dozens of insects and soon my mosquito net has filled with flying ants).

The groups return, we have dinner and try to go to bed. It takes a while to settle due to a drama downstairs; a Canadian has a cockroach in his room which causes a major meltdown. We have to listen to the drama in the dark - a second disadvantage of reading by lamplight is that it’s emptied the solar powered battery.

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