June 8-11, 2006
After a long travel day, it took a whole day to get caught back up on sleep. Craig and I decided to hang out in town for a few days before moving on. The next canoe trip doesn't start for over a week, and Rurrenabaque is the perfect place to relax. It's at the edge of the jungle and Madidi National Park, the most biodiverse national park on Earth. The surrounding scenery is amazing, and it's back on the Gringo Trail. I was really surprised to see all the tourists, especially Israelis walking around town. I had only seen three other tourists in the entire last month.
In my four days in Rurrenabaque, I watched a bunch of World Cup games, played a lot of chess against Craig on a new board he made, and met a lot of interesting people. Among them were an American ex-patriot who sells banana bread and cinnamon rolls from his homemade car with a 10hp tractor motor. He has a sign on his car declaring that "The Da Vinci Code is Ridiculous," and will discuss Armageddon with you for hours if you're up for it. Another person I met in town was Katrina, a Brit who has lived here for a few years. She has a cafe complete with DVD viewing rooms and a book exchange, which I desperately needed to use. Finally, I met a guy named Paul. He left his native Australia several years ago to travel around South America. Someone suggested that he check out Rurrenabaque, so he did. He met a girl there, got married, and had a kid. He's going to make one last trip back to Australia to save some money and go back to Rurrenabaque for good. Honestly, I can hardly blame him, it's such a nice place.
I tried using the Internet, but it's far too slow and expensive here because it has to be brought in via satellite. It's probably the only bad thing about Rurrenabaque. Also, for the eighth time, I had a power of two day. I'm clearly slowing down, though. It took twice as long to reach this one as the last one.