Tena Travel Blog› entry 1 of 8 › view all entries
We have now spent 4 weeks volunteering in the Amazon Rainforest, living and working in a camp called Jatun Sacha (meaning "Big Wood" in the Quichua language). Now we are all fully accustomed to freezing cold showers, inescapale humidity (nothing dries, EVER), large and scary insects, countless mosquito bites, endless plates of rice and wielding machetes around. Our work in the jungle was divided into different categories - CCPA (Centro de Conservación de Plantas Amazónicas), Granja Orgánica (the organic farm), Bosque (long walks in the rainforest accompanying the forest guardians), Kitchen duty, going to a local community and working at local schools. The daily programme would involve getting up at 6am for breakfast at 6.30 (getting up at 5am if you were on kictchen duty), working from 7.30 till 11.30, lunch from 12pm, work again from 1.30 till 3.30 and dinner at 6pm. For the evening the choice was usually to go to the bar or not to go to the bar.
Within our 4 weeks there we were entitled to 8 days off, and so decided to take a few "trips out". On Sundays the days was fairly easy going; a woman was employed to teach us how to make jewellery out of seeds, so the day was fairly relaxing (unless, once again, you were on kitchen duty).
We stayed in wooden cabins with limited furnishings (otherwise known as big adult wendy houses..), i.e. 2 beds, a table and some shelves.. On first impression these seemed a bit grim but we soon found that we did only use them for sleeping. Most of our relaxation time was spent fighting over the hammocks. Torches were necessary to navigate in between the buildings as there wasn't much lighting, and what there was tended to cut out quite frequently. All in all the accomodation was pretty simple, and I think that the prescence of a river-side beach nearby and broadband Internet in the office were the saving graces for some people...