My favorite day from this adventure, was visiting with an Amazonian community. We spent the morning hiking through the muddy amazon, in our rainboots, to reach a community an hour and a half later. Once there, we were taught how to make chocolate from start to finish, fed a fish lunch (which still had the head and eyes), taught how to make jewelry and the uses of medicinal plants from the surrounding area, and even how to shoot a blow gun. The reason this day was so special to me, was realizing how few modern conveniences could be found and just how happy and open they were to teach us their ways. I have never really thought that there were still inhabited areas around the world without access to television, indoor plumbing, and with dirt floors. It isn’t that these people were homeless or poor, but that they were perfectly content living in a house without door seals and mostly without walls.
When we were finishing our day with them, we sat under an awning shielding us from the rain that was furnished with wooden benches, which were used for the children’s studies previously in the day. We watched the entire community come out into the rain to play soccer. Everyone was standing on the sidelines giving the game their full attention, cheering for each other, without a care in the world. The sense of community and willingness to help/cheer on each other was astounding to me. Here at home, most people don’t speak openly or make eye contact with those around them, let alone invite them into their home. Living simplistically as these people do, in a world that only a few miles away is bustling with people and modern technology, is so refreshing. Seeing them live among the jungle, learning about it, protecting and not destroying it is an attitude and reminder that all life is precious and not everything we have is necessary to be successful and thriving.
While adjusting back to life at home, I will be mindful of my attitude towards others and forever grateful for my afternoon spent in the Amazon.