Trip Start Oct 23, 2006
Trip End Apr 15, 2009

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Flag of Venezuela  ,
Thursday, July 17, 2008

In need of some down time it is nice to be off the road for a day or two. We handed a bag of dirty laundry to the Senora and moved our things into our modest but clean air conditioned room. The next day was spent writing the stories for the blog.
It has been some time since you've heard from us. The last few weeks have been in very remote areas and finding wi-fi or internet could have been an adventure in itself.
So here we are safe and sound. I think we're sound, although you may be thinking not...anyway we haven't disappeared into the depths of the jungle or hugged to tightly by a snake.
Gillie is relishing in sleeping on cool tiled floors and can't decide where to plunk herself. We haven't heard her clicking toes for almost two years. Tonight she will be cooler with her new haircut. I am feeling displaced because my laundry is in the hands of another. This is the first time that we have used the laundering services. I am fussy and particular with soaps but in this case having clean clothes now is important because otherwise tomorrow Dom will have to wear his birthday suit.
To continue north we must cross the great Orinoco which winds around within the the borders of Venezuela and has only one bridge spanning it at Ciudad Bolivar so the crossing here in Caicara del Orinoco is by ferry.
So now, Friday, we're on this dilapidated ferry, going north across the Orinico. There is an old sign saying tht they will soon build a bridge across here, but it's an hour on the ferry, so we shouldn't hold our collective breath. It's hot, humid, and a bit scary as the water is bubbling up through the deck, right beside me!, Well they say it's not too deep!

We've had so much excitement here within a few short days to share with you that we've neglected to say that Venezuela is very scenic with the north end of the Andes boasting some of their highest peaks, highlands with flat top mountains and cool fresh air, steamy lowlands full of wildlife, white sand beaches and unfortunately cities with too many people especially Caracas and along with big densely populated cities comes crime.
The countryside is clean and vegetation thick and unkempt a refreshing change from the clear cutting and over trimming of other countries. There are various types of homes in the countryside, from basic straw huts to mud and straw to stone and most with thatch roofs. The villages are similar but the cities are either colonial or modern with standard box developments to quite elegant grandeur homes. They are definitely capable of good looking style.
Within cities and surrounding areas garbage is thrown, not even haphazardly but in piles, as if they care but don't care. Maybe garbage disposal is costly or maybe there is no city planned facility. Maybe we will have an opportunity to ask. We have yet to see a clear river, stream or body of water. It all looks like dish water. Maybe there is something to looking at your garbage and being aware of it rather than hiding it away.
There is stunning natural beauty here with some real world class attractions but it is natural and remote and cannot be accessed easily as we've discovered. Tours by planes, helicopters and four wheel drive off road vehicles are the way to get to the countries highlights. It could be a happening place but it just isn't.
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