Image: Forest fire in Brazil, no go Amazon Forest fire in Brazil, no go Amazon
Image: Lelia had bought 3 cases of donuts for Captain Phil Lelia had bought 3 cases of donuts for Captain Phil
Image: Spending evening trying on emeralds Spending evening trying on emeralds

Amazon river. Find what's missing in picture.
Sep 02, 2005    
Another lethal cab ride took us to the airport. As we boarded the plane, a newspaper announced that Bogotá is number 4 in the world of deadly traffic accidents. Only Rio (2), Brasilia (1) and Buenos Aires (3) are worse - Manhattan is in fact only number 8. Phew, we figured - thank god we are out of there.

The plane took us over miles and miles of greenery and rivers. Out of Colombia's 40 million people - only 200 thousand live in the southern parts. In fact, most Colombians will die without ever visiting the Amazon. The wilderness is mindblowing. No roads, no people - nothing but jungle.

30 minutes before landing, the engines roared up. The sun changed position in the sky. To our great surprise - we were going back to Bogotá.

Spent 6 hours back at the airport, the airline refusing to say what was going on. In the end, at 5 pm - a call said that due to forest fires in Brazil - the plane is postponed for tomorrow. Phil called from Leticia and said it could take days. The weather is cold down there and there's a strong wind blowing from Brazil. We cross examined Lelia; could we go down by car? Boat? There had to be some other way? Nope, the closest was boat from Cartagena - taking 40 days.

2 British girls approached us, wondering what was going on. They didn't speak Spanish and had slept through the flight. When we landed, they were startled how alike the Amazon was Bogota. Next they spent an hour waiting for their luggage. "I was so confused," said one of them.

The final picture is for the ladies back home: Spent last night trying on Lelia's emerald jewelry. Tom watched CNN. The necklace is worth 12 000 USD btw :) Fingers crossed for tomorrow.

Previous Dispatches

Bogota - city of gold and thin air    Sep 1, 2005
Arrived Colombia late last evening and Lelia picked us up at the airport. Went to her and Captain Phil's apartment in central Bogotá. The air was cool and fresh, we sniffed altitude - an on old fr


ExplorersWeb on the Amazon Queen   
This week, ExWeb is heading to Bogota to check up on Captain Gonzales and his Amazon Queen. American Captain Phil, a former Vietnam veteran, is using his paramedic past to provide tribes along trouble


Who is decapitating fisherman's bodies on the Amazon river?    Aug 15, 2005
May 10, 2004 17: 56 EST

"There is a legend on the Colombian Amazon about a strange light seen in the sky at night over Lake Tarapoto. Fisherman often won't remain on the lake at nigh

Later dispatches -