Journey to the Far Amazon: An Expedition into Unknown Territory

Journey to the Far Amazon: An Expedition into Unknown Territory

Journey to the Far Amazon: An Expedition into Unknown Territory

Journey to the Far Amazon: An Expedition into Unknown Territory

Excerpt

When I descended from the plane I was disappointed.

It was cold and raw, and it was raining. A nasty autumn drizzle carried on a nasty autumn wind under a nasty ten-o'clock-inthe-morning sky in the middle of the afternoon.

All color had gone out of the world. It was like night in the middle of the day. My fingers seemed to grope blindly for that thread of adventure which had sustained me so many years, through school, through war and my country's occupation, through my ethnographic studies, through years of wishing and planning.

Reporters and the curious met me at the airport. What was this madcap adventure I and three of my friends had planned, they wanted to know.

It was our plan to travel out from Bogotá along the Ariari, Guayabero and Guaviare rivers to the great Orinoco, to follow the Orinoco to its very source and then to traverse the unexplored Sierra Parima, where monkeys climbed and chattered, fierce tribes of naked Indians roamed and Incan treasures waited to be found. Beyond this virgin forest the great Amazon River would carry us eventually to the first white settlement on the other side of this vast continent.

"And you will take no weapons?" they asked.

"We will take weapons, but only for hunting game."

"And a camera?"

"Several cameras to film in still and motion pictures the people and the animals that inhabit that unexplored part of the world."

"If you aren't eaten alive by alligators or armies of ants or torn to bits by the sharp-toothed piranha fish of the rivers, you'll . . .

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