December 2021

Can you believe we are into the final month of 2021? I sure can’t. Time has been going by so quickly. I am still in disbelief that I have been out of the US for more than a year already and the experience has been nothing besides amazing.

My month of November has been spent away from everything related to this brand for the most part. Shortly before leaving Ecuador, I had experienced a sudden increase in my resting heart rate and my hands would tremble quite often. I kept a close eye on my condition and finally decided to visit a doctor. I went to the local hospital here in Iquitos, Peru for a checkup and all the blood tests had come back normal. They recommended a cardiologist for me to visit and after several visits there, I still do not know the cause. Every test conducted resulted in everything being normal, except the symptoms. I am now taking a beta blocker which has alleviated both issues and will continue to monitor my body for any other changes.

Due to my time spent at the doctor and the symptoms preventing me from fully experiencing this city, I opted to stay here longer and had booked another place for two weeks. The host at this hostel also informed me of my ability to get the covid vaccine nearby so went yesterday to get the first dose. Now I will be staying in the same place until the end of December to finish out the vaccine process and enjoy more of the area. I absolutely love it here so am happy to stay longer.

Since the doctor gave me the all clear, I have had the opportunity to visit the Manatee Rescue Center for a first encounter with some awesome animals as well as a visit to another site where I held a sloth and met some monkeys. I also met a local friend who had invited me to take a 24 hour boat ride upriver to a small town called Requena where we spent the night at his father’s house. This experience was definitely more off the beaten path and I am sure very few other visitors ever tried it. I did see first hand the local experience and learned how friendly Peruvians truly are.

Tomorrow, I am off on the adventure which drew me to the city.. camping in the middle of Pacaya Samaria National Park, the largest natural park in Peru. The activities listed out include several trips up and down the Amazon river, encountering the river dolphins, caiman and fishing for piranha. Also included is several night herping hikes. For those that don’t know, herpetology is the study of reptiles and amphibians, which means we will be looking for snakes and frogs. I could not be more excited for such a unique experience. Oh, and I will be sleeping in a tent in the middle of the rainforest!

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