Oh My GOD!
I went to the jungle! It was insane! The bugs were HUGE! And small, and hungry, and crawly, and everywhere. This guy was even trying to eat my mosquito net when I went to bed!
But I was okay.
I was creeped out thinking about the bugs, I really was. I imagined being a huge swollen human covered in itchy mosquito bites when I came home. Mosquitos love me; it was a real fear. Instead, I was covered with awe, sweat, and inspiration (and some mosquito bites but thats not the point here).
The jungle was so much more than I could have ever expected. I’m going to steal a bit of writing I did about it for the Project World School blog now:
“We saw 6 of the 7 species of monkeys in this national reserve; we saw peccaries, millipedes, frogs, snakes, and more than our fair share of mosquitos. We experienced a boat rescue, a true rainforest storm, sat in on Macaw chick monitoring sessions, and so much more! The researchers and volunteers for the Macaw Research Project talked to us about the program, and how important the preservation of the Macaws is. We even got to love up on the wonderfulMacaws at the Tambopata Research Center that were rescued as chicks 20 years ago, the Chicos. This trip truly has changed how we see the outdoors, and has installed a new found respect for the untouched earth and the beings that live on it.”
Now doesn’t that sound like a trip?! It was AMAZING!
We got to meet other travelers from all over the world there, as well. One family that was volunteering there were worldschoolers, too! There was a Chilean film crew, and a Swedish couple that were SO cute and wore fabulous pants. For one night there was even an older Spanish couple that owned a travel company, but they only stayed one night, ce la vie! We met artists in residence that gave us talks on their work; one family was bottling the smells of the rainforest, and another woman was capturing the sounds. Both were so impressive to listen to and learn about.
As you know, I was scared to go into the jungle. I was nervous and definitely outside of my immediate comfort zone. And I reaped the rewards!
Try something new. Get dirty and sweaty and smelly. Go live life to the fullest. Rescue some birds and stand up for what you believe in. Because one day your boat might get caught on a sandbank in the Amazon River and you’re going to start regretting the things you didn’t do. Or you won’t. These people didn’t seem to have any regrets, actually; they were excited to have something adventurous to film. Good for them.