In our guidebook was barely a passing mention of a lodge in the Amazon, called Liana Lodge, that turned out to be the highlight of our trip. It was accessible only by water (after a 2-hour bus ride from the nearest town) and had no electricity. But it was the perfect spot for us honeymooners. The lodge had been created as a revenue source to help fund the animal rehabilitation centre the owners had built (called AmaZOOnico, open to guests of the lodge). The construction of the lodge was very thoughtful: all the lumber used had been cut down by the government to build roads and no trees were cut down to build the huts and common areas - which means huts were built only where a natural clearing existed. This gave each hut a real sense of privacy.
The day before we were supposed to leave, I became violently ill. The kind owners used their single generator to run the blender to make me a jungle ginger cocktail to settle my stomach. It tasted awful, but it worked. We ended up staying a few days more so I could recuperate. Our extended stay also scored us an invitation to a Quechua wedding of one the employees as they felt badly leaving us all alone. All the old ladies ladling out the communal chicha (masticated, fermented yucca) had a great laugh at the tall gringo getting chunks of the "beer" in his goatee. Fortunately, my stomach ailment allowed me a polite refusal of the drink. What an honour to be included in such a personal, intimate event.
We spent almost a week there and as we were boarding the canoe to go back to civilization, the resident monkey (whom I had christened "Manolo") bounded down the stairs to say goodbye. Now I have my own little "monkey" and can't wait to introduce him to Manolo and all the wonders of the Amazon jungle.
Have you relived any of your "BB" travels? How did it compare to your first visit?