May 22, 2006
Remanso to Versalles Canoe Trip Day 3
We started putting the word out on the street that we wanted to buy a canoe as soon as we got here, and people started delivering today. We looked at a couple this morning that were nice, but far too small for three people plus all of our gear. At least they were dugouts, canoes carved from a single tree trunk. The next canoe was made from several planks of wood. It looked like it would hold more weight, but it was designed to hold an engine, so paddling would be very difficult. Finding a severed cayman tail in the back was an added bonus, but we still decided to pass. Other people kept suggesting that we buy an aluminum boat or take the free boat instead. They simply couldn't understand why we'd want to paddle down the river in a wooden canoe when easier options were available.
Late in the afternoon, we were talking about buying two canoes for the three of us. It wouldn't be the ideal situation, but at least it would be possible. Suddenly, an old man approached us and said that he had a big canoe for sale. In fact, he claimed it would comfortably hold 600 KG, over twice the weight we had calculated for us and all of our gear. As soon as we saw it, we knew it was the canoe for us. It would easily hold all our stuff and give us enough space for a comfortable journey. I got in and started thrashing around. It was nearly impossible to tip, and no water leaked in. After a bit of bargaining, it was ours for $100. With any luck, we'll be able to sell it at the party and lose little or no money on it. Even if we can't sell it, losing $33 on a two-week adventure won't disappoint me too much.
After we had our boat squared away, it was time to stock up. We bought enough food for a week, some rope, and some emergency supplies. We also got three nice paddles from various people around town. We'll leave first thing in the morning.