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It was a long and hot night and by 6 am we are all up. Within minutes following our ‘bucket’ shower and getting dressed, we are completely drenched in sweat again.
Right around the time we’re finishing breakfast, we hear a first roar thunder followed by lightning and a heavy rain. This will turn out to be another tropical downpour which will last most of the day, so we sit on the platform and try to make do. Since we have a big hole in the roof, part of the platform is constantly flooded. We pass the time photographing the spiders hanging between the beams and the roof. I’m bored and spend the time snapping pictures of the fish I caught and which are now swimming in a small tank.
Later in the morning we go out in small canoes despite the pouring rain. I’m fishing again and find some Epiplatys singa and Hemichromis fasciatus.
As the rain subsides, Jonas, one of our guide, begins cutting quinine bark from a tree. According to an old tradition and to show your respect, you have to apologize to the tree for cutting its bark off. The same bark is then cut into small pieces, put into a plastic bottle and partly filled with water. This is what the natives drink as a prophylaxis against malaria. We are told that there are plants in the rainforest that cure almost everything from nausea to diarrhea to constipation.
The rain continues, and so we try to relax and some of the team members take a short nap. Shortly after 3 pm, the rain finally subsides and we decide to go on a boat trip. By now, the sun is back and with it the heat and humidity. Thousands of flies, mosquitoes, wasps and Tsetse flies are buzzing around our heads, attracted by our sweating bodies. By 6pm we are back at camp and Klaus works on removing a wasp nest from one of Brian’s shoes that he’s hung up to dry. The heat is extreme and everyone’s clothes are drenched.
We take a short evening stroll at 9:30 pm and shortly after back at camp, we can hear hippos on the other side of the river. We take the boat out to have a closer look but the darkness makes it impossible to see. By 11:30 pm we’re exhausted and call it a night, settling in to what will surely be another hot and sticky night.
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