Iquitos - Quistococha & Noa Discoteca
Iquitos Travel Blog› entry 86 of 103 › view all entries
Quistococha is just beyond the airport outside of Iquitos and was recommended by the guidebooks and Peru tourist information office where I had received a map and several tips on things to visit in and around Iquitos. Olivia and I got a mototaxi to take us out of town to the destination which includes a zoo and a laguna and beach. It was beastly hot as usual but the zoo was in plenty of shade and it was welcome from the punishing heat radiating off the pavement on the way in. Incidentally, we passed the Amazon Golf Club, the only golf course in the Amazon. It´s just a 9 hole par 3 course but there is a small clubhouse and it´s quite an accomplishment here to have golfing for both members and non-members.
As we entered the zoo, there was a wall with painted illustrations of various legends and myths of the area including the legend of the founding of Quistococha. Apparently the natives were on the lagoon fishing when they thought they saw an island moving. It terrified them so much they called the priest to come and when he exorcised the lagoon a tremendous Anaconda rose up out of the lake before dying and the terror was over. In Quechua language, Quistococha means ¨Christ´s Lagoon¨. They also had illustrated the very popular local belief in the ¨bufeo colorado¨, the pink dolphin that transforms itself into a handsome man and seduces local beauties, only to later drag them down into the river and drown them.
Olivia hadn´t brought her bathing suit but I did and I took advantage of the sweltering day to swim in the lagoon´s warm waters which at least brought some relief. Then, since Olivia was just sitting on a bench watching me cool off, I suggested a boat ride. So I rowed for awhile and we enjoyed the stillness of the small lagoon, observing birds and the shores and the kids and teenagers swimming and frolicking in the water. On the way back we took a bus and it was an adventure because the bus route took us through the busy, crazy Belen market and I got to see block after block of classic Latin American market chaos.
For dinner I had told Olivia I would cook Italian for them and I freshened up (little good it did me when I was pouring sweat later in the kitchen) with a shower before getting supplies at the market. I found what I needed more or less except for basil for the bruschetta. I was going to make fresh pasta with a cream sauce and bruschetta. Well, with temperature in the high 90s and about that same in humidity, my pasta was a sorry affair. I had to keep adding flour and then more flour to keep the pasta from sticking but by that time it was so dense and thick that it turned out pretty bad in my estimation.
The night before there was no club open because of a new law passed by the mayor of Iquitos limiting the sale of alcohol to midnight on all days except Friday and Saturday when the bars and clubs can sell until 3 am.