A Trip in the Jungle (Part 1)

From the tarmac I could see palm trees.  Sweat was already forming on my back.  Iquitos, surrounded by the Amazon, was the largest outpost in the world unaccessible by road.  It was there, a friend, Keyo, was waiting.  Keyo had four foot dreads and eyes so blue he’d of been considered otherworldly by the ancient […]

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Jorge and the Gringo

Cusco was the most prominent city near Machu Picchu, its pristine historic district meant before and after the trip to Machu Picchu tourists could idle their time away in one of the safest and most developed places in Perú.  A vicious circle evoked by a world wonder maintained the city.  Tourists brought money, their money […]

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Note in the Desert

That morning I sat against the wall, sleeping bag over my legs and staring at nothing in particular.  My mind was turning gray.  I could feel it losing creativity like pigments being burnt white from the sun.  Hope was draining too.  Hope as a general sunniness near the horizon has followed me through life, but […]

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Passing Encounters

A bird not much bigger than a golf ball and the same color as the sand beneath it darted a few feet ahead, landed, then took off again.  It stayed closed to the ground and after the bird took flight I could see minuscule imprints of its claws.  For twenty minutes the bird stayed along […]

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Desert Stimulants

I flicked a bead of perspiration off the Red Bull on the table.  Ahead of me was a hundred and seventy kilometers of desert.  I figured with the help of some stimulants I’d be able to cover that in three days if I walked into the night. “I’ll need another,” I said to the young […]

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Afternoon Tea

Somewhere down the long stretch of road between the Ecuadorian border and the first Peruvian city I looked over my shoulder to see a cyclist rolling across the lane to me.  The man moved his glasses to his hat and revealed a pale face with sunscreen smeared over a few day old beard.  It had […]

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Descent from the Páramo

Beyond the Páramo I set my tent on the edge of a cliff bordered by pine trees and tall grass.  The grass hid me from the road and the trees gave me some protection from the wind.  Through the bug net of my tent I could see the massive Andean gorge splitting two mountains.  Following […]

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Cuy

The indigenous woman held up a clump of dirt and cocked her arm back.  She hissed something in Quichua, the Incan language which sounded most akin to Parseltongue, then raised her arm higher.     I didn’t understand, the moment before I was laughing as the herd of sheep approached and Savannah pounced around them as […]

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Generosity

By four-thirty on my third day from Quito I’d walked twenty-seven miles.  I’d been searching for a place to set my tent for an hour but nothing cropped up.  There weren’t any woods or nooks to hide in.  All around me were pastures, each acre marked by a cottage.     I paused at an empty […]

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