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Tambopata Journal: Getting There

April 2, 2011

Tambopata River by Gabby Salazar

Tambopata Journal

I have finally obtained permission for Rick and me to stay in park housing in the Tambopata National Reserve. It costs $6.00 per night, so perhaps it was worth the trouble (still debatable). I haven’t kept an exact count, but I believe I visited the Tambopata office over a dozen times in the last two weeks in an effort to obtain the necessary permits. A man named Ernesto has been assigned to help me. He looks up with a bemused, half-annoyed grin each time I enter the office. I huff and puff in an effort to show my exasperation with the process and quickly realize I am wasting my breath. He finds something wrong with the documents each time I bring them over. The sentence usually begins “Um, Senorita, I was wrong . . .” and then I have to change some critical part of the document. Thank goodness I’m only asking to take pictures – I can’t imagine how difficult this would be if I actually wanted to collect insects or plants!

In any case, he was helpful, albeit in a slow and protracted kind of way. Now, we have an official document and we leave for Tambopata tomorrow. The first stop is El Gato Lodge and then we go on to park housing at Malinowsky. We have to bring food to the second site and have explored the two supermarkets in Puerto Maldonado. Slim pickings , but at least we will know the food doesn’t contain meat.

Off to El Gato tomorrow!



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