I can't believe how this event is developing, I'm not a religious person and I've had to point this out a surprisingly large number of times here, yet something somewhere is afoot. I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that I have experienced the effects of someone or something else's influence on my life, I've recently described my life as seeming to be controlled by the tides, with surprising and uncontrollable lows followed by amazing highs. This is starting to feel like this, I carry my Nana's wedding ring and her husband's that she gave me personally, it could be for luck but really it's because I want to feel her with me. Don't get me wrong she would never approve of me doing this, she hated me putting myself at risk so I didn't get this part of me from her at all, I just want to know that I still have part of her.
I didn't expect everything to go smoothly when I got here, far from it, however I didn't expect to struggle quite so much. At stages I'd been so depressed by the events that were unfolding that I was feeling ashamed and embarrassed to be putting myself on the line yet again. I have an appreciation of my feelings after struggling with depression previously and I'm really proud of my awareness of my moods and the coping mechanisms that I have to deal with them. Yet these systems weren't working and things were looking bleak, Mark's arrival gave me the strength to get back on track and now I'm raring to go yet again thanks to the support of my team mate and his sound advice. But still the challenges and problems were there, still no boat and still under time constraints, we talked about postponing until we could commit to the time, we talked about partial attempts and coming back to finish and then we talked about adapting.
Without a chance encounter with a local guide in the jungle we might still be just a duo but hopefully now we are a trio and I couldn't be happier about it. We have already mentioned about the gains in speed and safety that we will have, but what about the other gains? We will be making a friend for life, this will be life changing for all of us, I now have two people looking after my interests as does Mark. Foreman has lived in Leticia and has friends in Manaus so we now have real checkpoints to reach with real people to help. And finally I have a real connection to the area that has done so much for us, now we will be doing this with them and not just starting it here. The chances are that this will have very little effect on the people off Iquitos and Loreto, but what if someone else sees (hopefully) what we have done, if they do their research and learn from our mistakes they will put more of their efforts into this area for support and I am sure they will get it. And what if it becomes more? What if the Amazon becomes the new fad, the new challenge and I really hope it does, then this area will come into its own with all the information and experience based here and not just sat on a sofa in the UK.