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Tuesday, October 31, 2017

On the Rio Negro: Manaus - Barcelos {AM Trip Entry #10}

10/07/2017 (rain)

Today. Yeah! I'm caught up. I'm on the Comandante Natal VII.  The owner is a member of the baptist church in Barcelos, the pastor of which I am going to visit. The boat is only 9 months old.  It's a 300 ton steel boat with 829 horsepower, 6 cycle Yanmar engine.  I think I saw 15.5miles/hour upstream, but 12.4 miles/hour is more normal. With 3 meters (10 feet) draft ,we do a lot of zigzag among the islands looking for deep water, sometimes 90 degrees. 

Another rain. It's a cool day especially with the drizzle so using my jacket. No houses on bank and few villages. Islands are all covered by a couple of meters of water at high river. Don't see any porpoise, but did see some Araras.  Always in pairs...

Arara blue parrots

Water in the Rio Negro (which means black) is dark, 
but transparent.

Where the Rio Branco (white river) enters the Rio Negro there's another water color mix. There was heavy rain until just after we stopped in Moura.

Guy's tossed freight including butane gas tanks! 

Beans with lunch, first time since Belém. The whole boat has an open banister, but if it sinks, you can only jump off from area marked "Emergency Exit."

Reminds me of the joke where a pick-up falls into the river and the guy drowns because he can't get the tailgate open. 

In the freight is a box of grapes from Santana do Sobrado (20 km from our house in Sobradinho).

More islands. More islands. Some more islands. "I spy…", "Island!" "How'd you guess?" Another island. Hundreds of islands and not a single Gilligan - or MaryAnn!  Look, an island! 

Wish that stupid lap dog would stop barking. I wonder how far he could swim?  "Wanna play fetch?"  "Look there's a cat . . . fish!"  Maybe I'd better stop - there's an island. A-H-H-H-H splash.
(Michele note:  this was a 24+ hour long trip)

Arrived in Barcelos 10:00 pm -ish. When we arrived a crowd of people were waiting, some with  'welcome' signs.  A wave rushed the boat. At first I thought they were boarding, but this was the end of the line. They came to greet/help friends and family (some were porters).  Later Pr. Josivaldo and his family came to see me. Seems there is no Sunday School at his church tomorrow morning as an 80 year old member passed away. Slept on the boat. Thought, I'm saving R$40 for a hotel room!

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