Just out cruising the river and headed upstream for a swim when we get asked by a local for a tow. Hells Yeah, We would be more than happy to tow you up river so you don’t have to paddle. Paddling would take probably 2.5 hours to get up river, but with a tow we had made it all the way up with him in about 30 minutes flat.
He was absolutely hilarious and one of the kindest individuals we have come across. He wanted us to take photos of him posing with his machete and ulu as we towed him. I’d look back on occasion and ask todos bien? and he would reply with the biggest smile muy bien! He was so excited about the tow I think we made his year and not only just his day.
About halfway up river he was hollering at me to enter the jungle with him. He wanted us to visit his family or something along those lines. My Spanish isn’t the best to say the least. I understood a few words and pulled over a little further up river where there was a tiny trail entering the jungle. We tied up the dinghy and headed into the jungle with our new found friend.
He was so excited to be bringing us to where he has buried his family members over the years. I believe from what I had seen that there were maybe 5 people buried here. Four of which had very basic tombstones, but one which had a beautiful thatch hut built over it and the ground below it was kept perfectly clean and covered in flowers. We sat with him as he cleaned a few leaves off the ground and knelt down for a quick prayer.
He explained to us of how this was his daughter and how she had died of not being able to get medical care for something wrong in her organs around her stomach. It was very touching and he cared so much about this grave. He visited every time he came up the river to look after her which was about every other day to collect fresh water. It was incredibly touching having him take us here to introduce us to his daughter. According to the tombstone she died last year at the young age of 28.
In other words he reiterated to me the importance of living life to the fullest now. You will never know when it could possibly be pulled away from you.
Finishing off a day in a refreshing cold freshwater river in the mountains for a swim. Then soon after arriving back at the boat the veggie boat showed up. Talk about a pretty winning day. I feel like I am on top of the world today.