Ship ahoy

We survived the night in our little windowless closet. In the end it was not so bad. Nobody has died so far from bad smell. And it really smelled bad in our room. My contact lens cleaning solution leaked during air travel and my pants were soaking wet. Plus the repellent spray for the clothes seemed to have opened since my back bag now reeks of it. At least I don’t have to spray anymore.
So we were pleasantly surprised by our breakfast here. A large buffet with lots of fruits in a light and almost (the windows don’t open) airy room.

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We are starting our ‘luxury cruise’ today with Rainforest Cruises on the Amazon Clipper. The meeting point is ‘Hotel Tropical’ to which we wanted to take the bus. The hotel clerk advised us against it and recommended a cab instead. This is individual travel at it’s finest.
We took the advised taxi to the Hotel Tropical and arrived there around 1pm. We were told to wait in the reception area, the cruise people would come to get us. Shortly before 2pm we met our guide, Wolf a guy from Germany. He spoke some kind of Genglish to put it mildly.
We really did book a luxury cruise, because our boat was correctly named ‘Premium’.

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We were picked up from the small port by a canoe and brought to our boat. We are only 15 participants on this cruise. Sylvia and I are by far the youngest. There are some American-Indian guys with us who are about the same age, but these are the only ones. The rest of the group seems to be retirees.
Right after arriving we met on the upper deck for a welcome drink and a short introduction to the boat, mealtimes etc. A ‘survival’ soup was provided for us since most people missed lunch. We also have some bananas on deck which are just so tasty. They don’t look like much but are excellent.

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After lunch we enjoyed the deck and the scenic view. We saw the meeting of the Rio Negro with the Amazonas, but will see it even better on Wednesday.

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At 5pm we had another meeting to get all details for the next days. This will not be a relaxing cruise, cause we have wake-up calls the next two days at 5:30 and we will start at 6am.
Tonight dinner is at 7pm and after that a night canoe ride to see our first animals. Will let you know if we do.

While waiting for dinner the sun was setting. Look at this incredible sunset which is picture perfect. Already I can smell dinner. Sumptuous spice smells are wafting upstairs from the middle deck where the dining room is located.
Dinner was quite excellent for such a small cruise, but a quick affair. The desert btw was very interesting, an ice cream made from cupuaçu (a kind of cocoa plant).

20130220-171059.jpgThis is how it looks on the tree.

We had to be ready by 8pm to start with the night tour. Putting on our swim vests, we looked quite adventurous.

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The boat had stopped for the night on some kind of lake. We used the canoe to get around. When we saw our first cayman there was a lot of excitement on board, not just from the girl next to me. The second one brought even more excitement cause he was caught and brought on board for everyone to see and touch. By the end of the tour they were just ‘inflationary’. We’d seen around fifty. We also saw lots of different birds, kingfishers and so, and some sloths (which I only identified as something with brown spots on a tree). We saw some chameleons and spiders. Honestly, even I got excited. Sylvia next to me was almost orgasmic. She is constantly watching some kind of animal planet at home and felt ecstatic. Everything was photographed, zoomed in and the watched in detail on her camera.
We have now returned to our boat and I am the only one still sitting at the bar, listening to the frog concert going on and drinking a caipirinha. I bid you all a good night and talk to you tomorrow.
Yours, Pollybert
PS: Wake-up call at 5:30

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