Saturday, August 21, 2010

You Tarzan Me Jane

Our jungle experience, the last adventure in our 10-day trip with the Jeffries family, began with moto taxi rides from the Puerto Maldonado Airport. This isn't a tourist experience--moto taxis, motorcycles, and bicycles are the means of transportation in Puerto Maldonado, the gateway to the selva. We saw very few cars in the three days we were in the jungle.

We were met by Waati and her husband Ronald (the first picture) who own the Anaconda Lodge, a favorite place of President and Hna. Tyler of the Lima Central Mission. While the Cusco area was still in their mission, they stayed at the lodge often while visiting their missionaries. Now Cusco is a mission! This picture was taken just before we left. Because we knew the Tylers and their office couple, Kay and Karen Cleverly, we were immediately taken in by Ronald and Waati. The Tylers and Cleverleys had told us about Waati's superb Thai food. We weren't disappointed. Ted and Margaret, who love Thai food, pronounced hers as the best they had ever eaten.

Gardeners often refer to unweeded gardens as jungles. Well, this garden is the real thing! Tarantulas love the banana leaves which are used to wrap food in, for one thing. Waati wrapped the left-over patii for Margaret and Ted to take with them on their last adventure to the Paracas Reserve.

Like the monkeys we enjoyed just hangin' around on the front porch of our little casita.

Rachel took a liking to us immediately. She talked incessantly, trying to communicate. She enjoyed climbing on our backs, legs, heads and hanging from the thatched roof, the beams, and the hammocks.

I took this picture of her climbing from my legs to the hammock. I wish there were some way to have recorded her chatter. Whatever she was telling us was important to her.

This caramel colored monkey must have been a toddler. He put on quite an act. He hung from Kate's shorts, curled up in a ball, tied himself in knots, and stretched out like a cat. He wanted to be held but only for a short time.

Just before I took this picture, he climbed into a clay pot filled with dirt and rocks, fished out a rock, and sat chewing on it. Then he threw the rock under the porch and attacked Kate playfully.

Rachel played with Dad for quite some time. She was the first to come on the porch, followed later by the caramel monkey and a tiny spider monkey.

The caramel monkey was a comedian and acrobat. He got himself into the hammock, swung in it for a while and then realized he couldn't get out of it. Kate had to untangle him.

Face off! These two tangled and played together. Our porch seemed to be their favorite hangout, but they visited other casitas as well.

There was another black monkey like Rachel. These monkeys are free to come and go. Waati feeds them and takes care of them. Many have come from Puerto Maldonado residents who cannot keep them as pets. They know her reputation as one who will rehabilitate and care for the monkeys

1 comment:

  1. Oh my heck you are really in the jungle! So brave of you , especially that rope bridge. The monkeys seemed to like you. The hammocks pictures are great. Stuart is thin are you feeding him enough? You look great Suz, and your family with you is the best part! I am so proud of you for your strength, and bravery, and joy. Happy Family Home Evening Night. Love Gwen