Last photo, and least!

Day 14: Future Benj Retrospects

Every other blog post was written in the moment, live on the ground. This last one is being written by me, Future Benj. Hindsight is not 20/20. Six weeks commit memory murder. I’ll do my best to piece these last few photos into a believable narrative. They’re from the zoo and the beach, so it shouldn’t be too hard! I seem to recognize the main characters. I’ll keep words to a minimum.

One thing you might not have noticed is that all the photos in this blog have a caption. You just need to hover your mouse cursor over them. If you don’t have a cursor, then use your finger to press down on the photo. Maybe the caption will pop up? It does on the Chrome app at least. Figure it out, and then reread the entire blog cover-to-cover to bring some new meaning into your life.

So this zoo adjacent to our hotel was created back in the 70s when this place must have been hopping with tourists from all corners of the globe.

Eric pretends to be fluent in Japanese

A lot of people have asked Future Benj, “Did you see any jaguars?” The answer has been, “Yes, on our final day!”

Caged jaguars don't count
photo credit: Maurice Ribble

There were lots of cool animals at this zoo, and they all seemed to be thriving. But you’ve been to the zoo before, right? You don’t need me to explain this to you. Animals in cages. But this last one’s my favorite.

Put your phone in selfie mode, then show it to monkey

After the zoo, we killed time by walking to Ponta Negra Beach. We hoped to find some delicious food options, but the beach vendors were all selling beer and candy. I guess if you’re in the right mood, that might be the perfect mix. But we headed back to the hotel and ate pizza at their one restaurant for the 3rd time. (This resort hotel used to have many!)

Remember, this awesome beach is on a RIVER

This music venue looks more like part of the Olympics

Maurice and I hit two geocaches near the airport, in what clearly appeared to be drug transactions to passing cars. I think we’d raise more eyebrows if it looked like anything else. We spent all afternoon and night at the airport just chilling out. There was nothing to do there. I got a sandwich and some sort of açaí drink. Eventually near midnight we went through security and boarded our night flight.

red eye
photo credit: Maurice Ribble

We dropped Eric off in Miami at much too early an hour, and proceeded on to Boston.

ouch, the sun hurts my red eyes

Now that we’re home safe and sound, here’s a collection of the Top 10 lessons from this trip, in case you want to skip the previous 14 blog posts. (I definitely recommend reclaiming that half hour of your life. You can still pretend you read it all.)

  1. Perils ordered from greatest to least: humans in cars, killer plants, chigger fleas, all other animals.
  2. It’s super easy to be a pescatarian in the Amazon.
  3. The water level is so high in the “wet season” that we’re basically kayaking through treetops.
  4. The pH of the river (at least in parts) is too low to support mosquito reproduction, making them a non-factor.
  5. Don’t go exploring without leaving virtual breadcrumbs and having some other Plan B.
  6. Despite everything you’ve been told, there are a few caves and waterfalls in the Amazon region.
  7. Despite being 2º south of the equator, the weather is no worse than a humid summer day in Boston.
  8. The concept of pink dolphins never gets old.
  9. Piranhas don’t eat you. You eat them.
  10. I don’t care how caught up in World Cup fever you are. Don’t play soccer barefoot on a sand pitch.

Until next adventure, Future Benj signing out.

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