2018 Columbia – Day 8

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Again I woke up before the alarm, although it had been somewhat arbitrary time for that as I hadn’t heard anything about a time for breakfast. I had figured I’d hear people but had set the alarm just in case.

I went to the bathroom, then walked the porches and looked out the front, and then out the back. We were in a huge place, but without a boat your world is pretty small… I went back to the room and Ohnoes! Eric was not feeling well. He took some medicine and went back to sleep.

Some others were up and about – sleep (or not) and the snorers were the big discussion topics. And the approaching cold front. I watched the ducks and vultures and the egret hunting around the “yard”. There was a kingfisher, and some sort of hawk over the river.

Breakfast! Arepa pancake and eggs with peas and carrots, meat (didn’t do) and a beverage approximating coffee + hot chocolate = amazon mocha. There was also bread, and randomly – popcorn?! Then packaged cookies and crackers – which, wtf with the crackers?

And… Off to fish for piranha! the morning’s activity. So, back in the boat. We saw some dolphins on the way to the fishing spot. We snuggled into the trees a couple different places, and the guide showed us what to do. The fishing gear was your basic stick with a string with a hook on it. You’d stick a piece of raw chicken on the hook, use the end of the stick to agitate the water (to get the piranha’s attention), then drop the chicken in. When you felt a nibble then a quick – but small – jerk up. Not – the guide pantomimed the rod sweeping up and over head.

Dan got the first piranha, and then others were successful as well. Someone also caught a catfish and I think a sardine – oh and a stick! When it was my turn I did as instructed, and was surprised how I could feel the nibble of a fish at the bait. It was my first time fishing. I pulled several times and no fish, and then also no bait – they’d gotten a snack without getting hooked. Then SURPRISE a pull and the hook came out with a piranha on it.

It wasn’t that big – maybe the size of my hand, and really didn’t look like much until the mouth was opened and you could see alltheteeth. We were not keeping them, but I felt bad when the hook was hard to remove. It didn’t look like there was much meat, but some other folks did try piranha at a restaurant later. Didn’t sound that exciting or that any of them would have it again, but I guess they could say they had tried it.

I saw another dolphin on the way back, but no one else was looking the same direction so I kept it to myself.

When we got back there was some more hang out time before lunch. Eric had slept all morning and thought he was maybe a little better, at least he was not worse. He very nicely listened to my report about the morning.

Lunch was fish (maybe the ones we’d seen caught out of the river?) and rice and beans. Angela talked about the upcoming election, a little discouraged, but matter-of-fact that “neither candidate is good.” And more of the outside world, there was Spain vs. Portugal in the World Cup on the satellite TV. There were also some other guests, including a very cute little girl who said “hello” whenever we saw each other.

Then it was time to load into the boats and head back to town. Once we were out in the water a ways we stopped and Angela and Jon had one more swim, cold front be damned. No one else joined them.

We did a bit of wending through some of the side channels that will disappear in the dry season, and saw monkeys(!) and some big blue bird.

Then we were out on the big channel, going the direct route. But somehow it seemed like it took longer than the trip there, maybe since it wasn’t “new” and there wasn’t so much to look at. It was also choppier – oh, maybe that we were going faster – and I was closer to the front – there was quite a bit of spray. I was getting a bit damp then in last bit there were a couple of whumps and waves coming in. “Is your butt dry?” Frankie asked. Uh, nope.

The boat docked and we squeeped up to the Anaconda. I noticed as we were checking in that I had that still moving like on the water feeling. I hoped that would clear up before sleep time…

Much more my speed than the resort place we had stayed. Basic hotel, but clean and totally adequate. The shower was a “suicide shower” – electric water heater mounted directly on the head – but it didn’t kill either of us. Funny how that is even though we were already wet the first thing we did was shower. Then I started to dry my clothes, but the hair dryer overheated after a while.

Anyway, it was Parrot o’clock!

When we went downstairs, Dan, Erin, Jon and Angela were in the lobby but didn’t join us on the parrot expedition. Eric and I went to the grocery store on our way to the park. While we were there Dan and Jon come in for cookies and beer.

We continued on to the park. The flying in was just as mesmerizing as the first time I’d see it. But wait, are they parrots? Some looked kinda swallow-y… Hmn. Yeah. But I had seen some that had yellow coloring, which seemed parroty. And some sounded parroty.

There was a football (soccer) game going on. We sat and watched for a bit. It was a concrete court, and some of the players were playing barefoot!

And oooooooooooo crescent moon!

Neither of us felt like a sit down meal, but I wanted to try the softserve, so we moseyed over to the other side of the park. I had the vanilla – at least that was what I tried to ask for. It was good but slightly different than I’m used to. I couldn’t quite put my finger on the difference, perhaps a bit of coconut? Or maybe I hadn’t actually asked for vanilla…

On the way back to the hotel we stopped at a bakery we had noticed on the way out. I realized again how much I take for granted the language thing – that is, being able to communicate. I mean we were able to pretty much get what we wanted with pointing, but I wanted to ask if two items were actually the same thing (they looked like the same flavor but were different shapes.) My “not-English” tried to help out, coming up with the Japanese word… yeah not so much. Although who knows, maybe I should have tried. I couldn’t even remember the “please repeat, slowly” phrase, but I guess I appreciated the being spoken Spanish to. When I thought about it, I realized I hadn’t really seen other Western tourii.

When we got back, the other folks were still hanging out in the lobby, so we scored beer and cookies! They were working up to go out, but we went up to our room and relaxed. Ohand I was able to dry out clothes some more – the hair dryer had cooled off enough to reset from earlier overheat. Good times.

more pictures

June 15, 2018

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1 Response to 2018 Columbia – Day 8

  1. Pingback: 2018 Columbia – Day 7 | 2m2t

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