I'd be lying if I said that the Amazon was at the top of my list when we found out we'd be coming to Chile. Torres del Paine and Machu Picchu ranked #1 and #2 and then after that...well...I didn't even really know what was possible down here. Wow, have we learned A LOT and seen even more than I could have ever hoped. It's amazing what happens when you start reading and talking. Before you know it you are hearing names of places you never knew existed and helpful hints from those who have braved it before you. That is one thing I LOVE about expat life. Conversation, no matter what, always turns to someone's latest trip, even if only for a few minutes...and my list grows.
That's how the Amazon happened. I was talking with my friend, Channa Bailey, one day, who had lived in Peru before coming to Chile. She mentioned that one of their best family trips they still talk about was to the Amazon. It piqued my curiosity of course, so my list of questions began to form. When I learned that their trip was in fact in Peru, I felt a little lame. I didn't even know the Amazon started in Peru!!!! I thought Amazon = Brazil. Let's say that my map studies of South America have been focused on the bottom half of the country and not the top half ;)
I mentioned Iquitos, Peru to Joe--where the Amazon begins. We always try to plan a trip right around Christmas, so we have something to think about other than being so far away from our family at our favorite time of year. This sounded like the perfect thing. He was in. I started planning. The kids were excited, but I don't think they knew exactly how cool this was going to be. Heck, I didn't know how cool it was going to be. When we showed up at the clinic for our vaccinations and malaria pills, they asked me through tears why anyone would EVER have to get shots for a supposedly amazing vacation. Opposition in all things, right?! Sometimes you have to endure a little pain to appreciate the pure AWESOMENESS that this world has to offer.
And so, with that, our adventure begins.