Not goodbye, solo hasta luego

It’s only been eight days since the Amazon Adventure Crew parted ways in Lima, but if we learned one thing on this trip, it’s how much can happen in that short amount of time.

A water tank can be built in an Amazonian village. That same village can construct a set of stairs down to their river and start using a brand new medical kit. A playground can be put together in a barrio in Iquitos. Two beautiful murals can be created. A garbage clean-up campaign can be organized and undertaken successfully.

12 people can learn how to communicate (with words or with gestures) in a foreign language that most have had no previous experience with. Those same people can connect with two communities, learning that people from completely different world’s are not so different. In a short amount of time, they can come to know a country more intimately than some people do who travel for months, or even years.

We accomplished all of this and more during our stay in Peru, but we also understand the importance of sustainability and continuing to support both of our partners in their current and future projects. Asociación Mayantu, an environmental collective of university students, works throughout the year in conservation and education projects in remote villages in the Amazon. We are looking for another project now which we can support. Though our garbage clean-up campaign was a success with KALLPA Iquitos, we would like to help find a more sustainable solution to the garbage problem in El Porvenir. As part of new project, the brainchild of OG and KALLPA, we will be funding the start-up of a garbage collection initiative in the barrio. We will be updating everyone on the progress of these projects, another good way to keep connected!

But what now? No more condiments in bags? Condensed milk in incredibly sugary coffee? Conversations solely with noises and hand gestures? Sublime?

There are many things we will miss, but there is so much more that we can take with us. Experiences like this show how one’s true character comes not in what happens to them, but in how they react to it. Many of us faced challenges throughout the trip, both physical and personal. Through each others support and our own strength, everyone made it through and learned a lot about ourselves in the process. We take home a deeper understanding of ourselves, of ‘real’ development work and, of course, Peru.

We want to thank the entire Amazon Adventure Crew, you made this an incredible experience that we all know it can’t be described in words (though we will all try).

Keep in touch. Keep up the amazing work. Keep enjoying hot showers and toilets with seats.

One last time from your fearless Peruvian Guias,

Laura y Jonas