Jungle ski adventure
Good thing arriving from the « chat » with the locals was the info relating to the possibility of getting on foot and bus to Paraty – an old little port few hours sailing from Mamangua.
To get there we left the “dingo” on the leash in someone’s backyard and set of on foot across mountain towards Paraty Mirim. The clime was not so bad but getting off on the other side proved my best skiing abilities. No chance for carving as the mud too slippery following week of non-stop rain. The new ski technique consisted of a slide from one tree to the next holding to anything within grasp for dear life. Couple of wipe-outs later we arrived in the middle of nowhere.
Mamangua from the Jungle above.
One closed church, beer kiosk and unmarked bus stop, that’s it.
There was a white horse, untied waking about and eating some sea grass, between two goal posts next to the beach. Not a soul in sight. Half an hour latter some people started appearing – good indicator of great event -ARRIVAL OF THE BUS TO HELL.
Bus ride to hell
Buses, as you might have noticed, are the only financially acceptable forms of transport in Brazil.
I have (touch wood) never suffered from the sea sickness but the ride on the bus through the jungle nearly change all that. The so called road was simply dried riverbed where yet another cousin of Ayrton Senna was trying to make a local dentist some clients by knocking our teeth out in record breaking time. How on earth these busses last for a year of such a “service” is beyond me. The family of local Indians have joined us at one of the “onibus” stops all dressed-up for their annual trip to the “Big City” of Paraty. First glimpse of Paraty town was rather short as we had to catch the creasy ride back. The bus managed to bring us back in one piece to our middle of nowhere and we were glad to be in our quiet bay of Mamangua.
Sittin’ On The Dock of the mamangua Bay
I was convinced that good old Otis Redding must have got inspiration for his hit by simply sitting by the Lost world of Fundo do Saco do Mamangua and looking up to the 1200 metres peak covered by the dense forest doing nothing in particular.
Just opposite our “parking spot” there was some wooden structure with a big white banner hanging up-front. Using our best field glasses we could just made-up the name DADIDO. Driven by curiosity we explored it in a “dingo” who jumps over some huge (unmarked) rocks sitting right outside it, so to arrive in the weirdest restaurant ever.
A few wooden tables sitting on the wooden terrace on huge wooden pillars covered partially by wooden roof with a proprietor with a wooden leg and the wooden parrot seating on his wooden arm, selling some wooden models of the wooden boats used locally to transport wood from the woods nearby. That’s what one calls living with nature.
The fish served there was delicious as it was fresh and prepared in front of us. Drinking water to top-up our empty canister was excellent and free. Strongly recommended. While having our second pint (bear not water) we were told that at the end of the bay there is an entrance to the hidden river leading to elusive waterfall (Cachoeira in local).
Muddy Waters adventure
Next day met us riding our “dingo” penetrating dense mangrove forest at the very top of the Mamangua bay. The tide was high and we went in to virtually every accessible opening (so common with sailors) yet finding only dead ends as if the anchor was placed there preventing us to go anywhere further. After a few futile attempts we had to retreat (lol) as the tide was beginning to slack and we can get stranded there for hours in increasingly shallow water. It was a Mad adventure in very muddy waters. On the way back we had decided to visit one more place called Praia do Curupira, and guess “Watt”?(see next chapters)
Who has found the electrical BULB?
Great American scientist Thomas Edison was apparently not the first to invent the light bulb. It was an Englishman Humphry Davy who invented it but the person who founded it on Praia do Curupira was our Great French explorer Olivier Courtois.
The electric bulbs grow on trees and in the jungle can get to the incredible size of 60 WATTS. This we have found on our escape from the MUDDY WATERS. (by the way Watt is yet another famous name – simply the title of the album of the English band called Ten Years After – see “I’m going home”)
Rio Bravo e Vegetacao
We had a second go at our Didoda or Dadido host the same evening. By the time we had polished our third “Original” our Portuguese becomes Fluid or was it fluent. NOW we KNOW better. Avoiding the hidden rock, few fish nets we ride our Dingo safely to enjoy and pump him up for a good measure.
“Walk on the Water” by ApologetiX (see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7lAh7P8kNYI)
Oli-gators, anna-kondas and paranohas
With a touch of headache we get on dingo first thing in the morning and (as the tide was at the low ebb) we get stranded in the middle of the bay.
Miraculously Olivier manages to Walk On the Deep Purple Water and finds a “shallow water diver” to ask directions to the Cachoeira. How could one have missed that? A simple set of Gaol !!!!! Posts. (after all we are in Brazil).
Hurray!!! We found the entrance and follow up the river with an incoming tide current. Well. I know it is not an Orinoco but next best thing.
Final leg we had to puddle. I kept mine (leg) in the dingo preferring not to call it the “last leg I had”. Did not trust Olivier when he assured me that the Alligators are not in Brazil (but Caymans are not only inhabitants of some far away islands of the same name, are they?). Nor did his explanation that all the local caymans were eaten by anacondas and anacondas vanished simply as the piranha had them, could persuade me to get my “leg over” the dingo – side. The final argument won, however, all mentioned beasts were eaten by tiny mosquitoes which are breeding in Brazilian Jungle thanks to the sponsorship of John&John’s Son, who in turn, are specializing in skinning humans there, by charging astronomical sums for mosquito repellents.
Na(igra)da Cachoeira = waterfall = Cascade
What an achievement; – we get there by mistake.
There was a banana tree forest so we got out of our mosquito infested dingo (what happened to the good all fleas??) and tried to knock them (not the mosquitoes nor the fleas) down but the bananas which turned out to be far too green for consumption. We have concluded that they would never get ripen on our boat ( c’mon we are not that bad – spelling wise). Best to ask local growers if they can sell us some.
Lacking three or four pints of “official” we were lost in translation again. Disregarding all efforts of the farmer or (watch dingo – I am still not sure which one) we picked a bit of passion (fruit) laying on the ground and followed THE SOUND.
The Waterfall;- sorry “the waterfall” turned up to be just a little fall of the
water from rocks but the reassuring knowledge that nobody was up the river allowed us to drink the water, bathe in it and so on. Some of the blue butterflies flying around were as big as my palm and I bet they feed on flowers surrounding the place, various fruit of the forest and definitely on mosquitoes (though I have still applied generous coat of mosquito repellent armour upon my naked body – thanks John&John’s Son). Olivier has commented that he is going to invest all his money in to developing another Brazilian brand of repellent as a sure business venture.
Local Blue Oyster Club (Olivier’s Temptation)
Never ending choice of colours and architecture (Something to do with Portugal I think)
To our surprise, one morning we had a visit from the local fisherman on his boat.
Surprisingly, he did not come to complain about us treading on his “Waterlogged Football Pitch” nor scaring his “hunting pelican” but to offer us some Oysters that he picked that morning. Olivier could not resist and bought a dozen.
Local football fan looking at the pitch – must be Brazilian football supporter or fishing pelican.
In the evening Olivier has admitted that those were the smallest oysters he ever had and promised to investigate the possibility of setting Oyster Farm in Brazil in the future.
Yes and the Oysters are from the Mamangua Fishing Club and you do not need soup spoon