June 15, 2006
It was another slow start today as everyone took until after 9:00 to get ready. The only thing on the agenda before going home was swimming with the dolphins. After breakfast, we went up the river for awhile and all jumped in. We didn't see any dolphins, but at least no alligators ate us either.
We went back to camp, had lunch, then got ready to leave. While I was waiting for everyone else to shower (with the same water they were just swimming in), I had another fish. We all piled into the boat again and went back downstream toward where we started the tour. On the way, we saw a group of dolphins and were asked if anyone wanted to swim. Everyone else had just taken a shower, so I was the only one to go (once again, shower water=river water). This time the dolphins were closer, but they didn't approach and play with me like you see in the movies. Of course, movie dolphins are of the cute, sea-faring variety, while these were an ugly freshwater species, so that might have made the difference.
When we exited the river, we got back in the Land Cruiser and were driven down the bumpy road back to Rurrenabaque. The trip was great for wildlife viewing, but it was too bad everything moved so slowly. The activities we did (go down a river, look at animals at night, look for anacondas, fish, swim with dolphins) could have easily been done in two days if it weren't for all the dilly-dallying. Most of the other tourists don't mind that the tour is three days because they fly to and from La Paz specifically to do this tour, so it's their only chance to see the jungle. Never mind the fact that most of their jungle viewing is done from a hammock or a muddy river water shower.
When I got back to Rurrenabaque, I got a bus ticket to go to Trinidad tomorrow. The only problem was that the bus was leaving from Guayara, and I was told that it could get to Rurrenabaque anywhere from 3-7 AM, depending on road conditions. I moved into a hotel right next to the bus station and told them to wake me up when the bus got there. Of course, I couldn't just go to bed early on my last night in town, so I hung out at the famous Mosquito Bar with my comrades from my tour most of the night.