Trip Start Jul 20, 2006
Trip End Aug 10, 2006

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Flag of Peru  ,
Thursday, July 20, 2006

From the grey idusrtious city of Lima  we flew to Iquitos, a sprawling town in the north right in the Amazon basin, being the worlds largest town without road connections it is almost a island, completley shut off from anywhere else by miles and miles of dense rainforest and the snaking Amazon river. Once a major town for the rubber boom its principle industry now is ecotourism and cocaine(90% of the worlds supply is processed here).
 we were here for the former for a brief foray into the amazon. The night before we set off after having a hearty dinner of alligator and a wierd prehistoric fish called parralli (very tasty) we had a few beers alongside the amazon as its milky brown waters flowed off to the mysterious rainforest . We shared a few beers with a local guide,walter , a American named Jim who was like a crocodile dundee type having spent 15 years in the deep rainforest researching the beasties and John another american who had a  snake breeding shop back home and was here to catch some elusive viper.
 Much to Nikkis anguish over a few beers we heard about the cadgeroo, a small fish which swims up your urinary tract when taking a leak and lodges itself up there with spiky barbs, the bullet ants which are so called as their bite is like being shot,the bott fly which gets transmitted by a mosquito and results in a big cyst on your arm filled with a larvae which slowly eats your flesh, the spiders which lay in wait for anything which passes and leaps up and bites a flesh eating poison into its victim and of course the many other snakes and insects which abound in the rainforest just seemingly waiting to inflict apparent harm on tasty westerners who fancy themselves as the next Livingstone, I was excited, Nikki was worried.
 The lodge was 2 hrs down the Amazon reached by a fast outboard canoe passing small little villages by the river,several fishing boats,a couple of boats carrying huge amounts of logs which are felled both legally and illegally down the Amazon .
  The first day i forgot my fear of being eaten or having rescue surgery on my manhood and ran and dove into the Amazon in a state of childhood glee(i had always wanted to do that)  and as well as spotting pink dolphins(yes they actually exist) i had my nipple viciously bitten by a lady fish(not a piranha as i thought) which made me squeal like a girl running from the water clutching my bleeding nipple much to the amusement of my guide.
We had a few forays into the jungle but seen very little,just a couple of monkeys and a few funky insects,a couple of days is definately not enough to see what this enclave of evolution actually holds within its green walls so its another place i will return to but for a few weeks next time.
    Back at the lodge however they had a capabara, this looking somewhat like a cross between a dog and a hamster with straw like hair and sounding like a horse whinnying with trapped vocal cords is the worlds largest rodent and liked to pretend it was a dog, liking its ears stroked!, there was also a spider monkey they named peco who sat on my lap whilst i had lunch and cheekily stole food off everyone elses plate before pissing over another guest
. The next day we trekked for 4hrs through dense rainforest and came across giant lillys like big green tables, more monkeys and a sloth, then coming across a huge lake we went piranha fishing! only managing to catch one we went back to the lodge feeling hungry and dissapointed(i  was hoping for a feast of piranha) had lunch(jungle chicken) and headed back to Iquitos and civilisation. After another dinner of Majas, which is like a tapir, and fried alligator rind ,a peaceful sleep and a mad ride in a tuk tuk to the airport our flight has bought us back here and now we are waiting for another flight to the mountain town of Cuzco from which we will head to Macchu Pichu. 

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