After retentioning my bow (by twisting the string) I'm handed my 3 real arrows. 2 barbed for fish and birds and 1 spear tipped for mammals. I'm told that in isolation everyone encounters a situation to use them, it's up to you as to whether you make the most of it or not.
Today's remit is to trek into the Jungle, spot trees, make fire and fish. We spot plenty of Kutkrit palms whose fallen nuts contain the big white beetle grubs we ate yesterday. We chopped down a Heart of Palm tree (with Machetes, f*cking cool tool eh?) and ate its starchy heart; a small cabbage-esk tasting, leek looking bit at the top. Around Gum (aka rubber) trees you find lumps of sap which had oozed out of the branches up high. These rock looking lumps actually burn very well and can be used to start fires and to make old fashioned flaming torches. Silk Cotton trees produce nuts whose husks contain cotton wool, fire starting material. And of course the water vine! You cut a section out, upturn it and drink water! You cut the top first, then the bottom, otherwise capillary action sucks the water straight to the top of the vine faster than you can chop it down! We were also shown a vine which the locals reckon is a cure to snake bites and a cure to cancer! As most of the world's medicine is based on jungle plants and knowledge, I've a tendency to believe them.
We found a little creek where we tried our hand at fishing again - both traditional and with bow and arrow! And dead eye Graham shot a little fish! We gutted it, made a fire, grilled and roasted it (and others which the locals caught). We came across the remains of a big Bush Cow that'd been had by a Jaguar! I pulled out and kept some of it's fangs - I figure they'd look good on a necklace.
I wore my Leopard print posing pouch thongs for my Piranha Jungle wash today. The guys weren't impressed. Jealousy huh!? After dinner we spotted a Brown Fishing Eagle asleep in a tree near the camp so we wasted a couple of training arrows taking pop shots at it with our lethal bows and arrows. We all missed although dead-eye Graham ruffled it's feathers. The Eagle kept on sleeping.
Everyone went to bed after finishing off the remains of last nights beer and messing around with fire torches made from the sap of the Gum tree. Whilst sat on my own, Lionel (local guide) dragged me out to see a huge fish he'd just caught and an armoured, talking(!) cat fish. Then we headed out in the canoe to see a huge tree boa they'd spotted. Awesome! (A word I find myself using a lot on this trip!). The local guys later come back for a shot of rum. I showed them the photos of Guyana I've taken so far - they love it! And the recent sound recording of the talking cat fish really cracks them up!
The weather was dry ALL day and beautiful to boot, but still hot and humid. Although we didn't walk that far my shirt, and everyone else's except for the local boys, was permanently soaked with sweat. On the walk alone I drank 4 litres of water (8 pints) and only went for a waz twice!
Posted by Steve Eynon