Thanks for your patience- it’s been a few days since we have had clear internet access/cell service.
By: Gobi and JackThe day began at the Saona shelter in Infierno. We got to wake up a little later because we did not have to work in the morning. After breakfast at 8 am we had a 40 minute boat ride filled with beautiful views to a wildlife shelter. The boat ride was the first time in a while where we had time to just sit and relax. When we arrived at the shelter we saw over 70 different animals including a large number of different monkey species, parrots, and by far the cutest baby sloth you could imagine. After touring the shelter we ate lunch and got ready to prepare and feed meals to the animals. Each animal recieved specialized portions of fruits, vegetables, and mashed potatoes with eggs. After feeding all the animals we took an hour and a half hour boat ride to the Carlos’ Amazon Expidition Lodge. Upon arrival we recieved our room assignments and had 2 hours to hang out and play cards. At around 5:30 we were able to see an amazing sun set before a night time boat ride to look for caiman. Unfortunately we were unable to find a black caiman which is the biggest of the three species, but we were still able to see plenty of baby white caiman which looked like hybrid alligator and lizards. Dinner was at 7:30 pm where we enjoyed a delicious beef and rice stew with yuka and plantane chips on the side. After dinner we had a quick ANCHOR session before going to sleep early due to a 4am wake up time. Overall the day was interesting and relaxing for everyone and made us very excited for the coming days.
By : Maelynn and Jamie
The day began at 5:00 am in the dining area. We were all tired. After breakfast, we had a 20 minute boat ride to Lake Sandoval. There, we hiked through the jungle for about 40 minutes to the canoes. We canoed for about 2 hours watching for animals like birds, monkeys, and caiman. On the canoe, we enjoyed snacks like apples, oranges, and passion fruit. After that we took a break at a local family’s house for about 15 minutes. There, we relaxed and got ready for the ride back. As we canoed back, we began to race back to the entrance. We made the hike back then took a boat back to the Expedition Lodge. Before lunch, we had downtime where we napped, read, and worked on our Leadership stories. After lunch, we had a little bit more downtime, so some of us went kayaking. We took the boat down the river then kayaked to a beach. There, we played soccer against the locals and splashed around in the water for a bit. Sadly, we lost 1-5, but we had a great time. Later, we gathered on the pier and took some group photos with the sunset behind us. Then, we talked for a bit and played volleyball. After volleyball, we went on a night hike where we saw night monkeys, tarantulas, scorpions, snakes, and much more. It was really cool to see all the wildlife that lived so close to where we were staying. After that, it was time for dinner, ANCHOR, then bed. The day was very long, but we had so much fun and bonded a lot as a group.
By: Geneva and Cailyn
At 7:30 A.M. we arrived at the dining area of Carlos Expedition Lodge with our bags packed for our journey back to Infierno. After a hearty breakfast of fresh fruit, bread, and eggs, we boarded a boat and rode down the river to the city of Puerto Maldonado. While on the boat we rested, read, and enjoyed the scenery. We got to the city and piled into the van that took us to the children’s center. We were greeted by a hoard of little children excited to meet the gringos. Inside the dining room, we heard the history of the children’s center from the head of the center, Yolanda. There are about 15 kids who live there for various reasons and come from all different family backgrounds. We also heard the stories and experiences of two other employees and some of the children. Then we split into three groups, one group cutting fruit, one preparing food, and the other transporting fruit. While cooking, the “preparation squad” was whisked away for a dance party with the children. They told us they normally only listened to Christian music so hearing pop was a special treat. We danced and played with them and challenged them to a game of soccer. We were surprised to see three guinea pigs at the center, which were not pets! While playing with the kids, they walked around offering us bananas picked from the bushel hanging near the grill. Our group rendenzvoused in the dining room and enjoyed a meal of rice, chicken, and fried plantains. At the end of the meal, plates were stacked, food composted, and photos taken, and we were ready for our ride back to Infierno. As we drove in, it began to rain, so when we arrived at Saona, we shouldered our bags and prepared for the muddy trek back to the shelter. We returned and got ourselves situated back into our rooms before returning to the dining area to do an activity. We played a quick round of categories and prepared to share our leadership stories. After we ate our dinner of pasta, salad, and plantain fries, we circled up and reflected on our day with ANCHOR.