Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Leaving Yachana Lodge

This is a final blog entry about Yachana Foundation and Lodge.  The number and diversity of the plants and animals that Juan showed us is too massive to portray in this blog entry (we will give some samples), and we did portray a “feel” of our walk in the old growth jungle in our videos posted on Feb. 27 immediately after we returned to Cuenca from Yachana  (Yachana Reserve: A Glimpse of Primary Jungle).

However, we need to spend some time on the “cooking lesson” done for our lunch on Friday, Feb. 25.  First, an “earth” snake visited the area where we were cooking, and this event excited Juan as he had not seen one in some time.  After the slithering excitement, we proceeded to learn how to cook tilapia fish roasted in leaves, we ate fresh “heart of palm,” and we learned how to roast palm weevils supposedly good for anything that ails you (see pics).   

We close this blog entry with some animals that we saw in the afternoon and evening (again we were enthralled with Juan's skill in locating and showing us the wildlife.)
Our surprise visitor before lunch .
Fresh ingredients with some salt.
Randall takes instruction on how to prepare the fish in a leaf so it can be roasted.
Fresh "heart of palm" with salt and lime juice. It all disappeared.
Harold had boasted he eats anything and he is presented with palm weevils.
Although the weevils can be eaten "uncooked" - Harold opted for roasted.
We had seen "palm weevils" presented in the Cuenca outdoor market as the source of "Cleansing Butter" that helps with various ailments (arthritis, rheumatism,..)
We all ate roasted weevils and Julie said it tasted like bacon.  All agreed.
Juan showed us the source of Luffa Sponges.
Poinson dart frog.
Toucan picture taken through the telescope.
Water snake
Another frog
And another
Monkeys in the trees
We went downriver by canoe to Coca from the lodge (two hours) and then flew from Coca to Quito on this plane.  We took a different flight from Quito to home in Cuenca.

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