Saturday, May 25, 2013

Day 5 | Ecotourism 2013

We were all reluctant to get out of bed at 5:00 am for our sunrise contemplation, but the tranquil Negro river quickly made up for it.  We did not actually get to witness the rising of the sun because of the clouds but we did learn about birds such as the parrots waking up on or close to 6:00 am and how they travel in pairs to act as an alarm clock to wake up all the other wildlife.  After the sunrise contemplation it was sad to say goodbye to the lodge but we were excited to see what we would be doing the remainder of the trip.  We traveled by boat to nearby Novo Airao and were greeted by our next host, Jean-Daniel, the director of the local nonprofit Fundacoa Almerinda Malaquies (FAM).

He took us to the FAM office grounds and gave us a brief history of the organizations origin and took us on a tour of the property.  One of the stops on the tour was the wood shop. Here, we saw the process of how to make wooden carvings such as bowls, plates and animal figurines. The wood worker we met has created prized bowls out of colorful wood scraps.  His creations are being honored at the World Cup next year and have been purchased by Bill Gates!  Next on the tour was the production of recycled paper.  The women here showed us the process of creating it.  The process involves combining recycled paper pulp water and glue with wood shavings for added texture.  After the demonstration we all got to make our own page.  Later in the day Senor Miguel, the founder of FAM,  arrived all the way from Manaus to speak with us.  He, with Jean Daniel presented to us about the inspiration of creating the organization, their experiences and backgrounds in ecotourism, and then they answered any questions we had.  Local ecotourism students around our age also joined us during this presentation.  We met the students and we all talked about our experiences with ecotourism.  Then, we got to see a few of Leandro's hip hop students perform for us.  This was definitely the highlight of our day!  We finished our long day by going to EKOBE, a project of FAM, where we spent the night in hammocks.

1 comment:

  1. Meeting the students at FAM was one of my favorite parts of the trip. Hope everyone was doing well there!