By Claude Levi-Strauss
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Extra info for Tristes Tropiques
From Largon onwards, we have been to keep on with ‘the Indian road’; the slope of the serra was once very steep and we needed to cross down walking, guiding the anxious horses over the tough floor. The tune ran above a torrent, which shall we listen bouncing and cascading over the rocks, even if lets no longer see it; we slithered over rainy stones or via muddy swimming pools left by means of a contemporary fall of rain. ultimately, on the foot of the serra, we reached a round open area, the campo dos Indios, the place we rested for some time with our horses sooner than atmosphere off back around the marsh. As early as 4 o’clock within the afternoon, we needed to start considering the place we might make our subsequent halt. We chanced on a couple of timber among which hammocks and mosquito nets should be slung; the courses lit a hearth and ready the meal of rice and dried meat. We have been so thirsty that we had no hesitation in gulping down pints of the aggregate of earth, water and permanganate which was once the single liquid on hand. evening started to fall, and from at the back of the coarse, soiled muslin of the mosquito nets, we gazed for some time on the fiery sky. We had infrequently received to sleep while it used to be time to trigger once again. The publications woke us at nighttime, with the horses already saddled. within the sizzling season one has to exploit the cool evening air in an effort to spare the animals. slightly wide awake, numb and shivering, we started following the song back within the moonlight; because the hours glided by, we watched for symptoms of sunrise, whereas the horses stumbled ahead. approximately 4 o’clock within the morning, we arrived at Pitoko the place the dept for the security of Indians as soon as had a major station. All that was once left was once 3 ruined homes, among which there has been in simple terms barely enough room to sling the hammocks. The Rio Pitoko flowed silently by way of; it rises within the Pantanal, into which it really is reabsorbed a number of kilometres additional on. This wadi of the marshes, which has neither resource nor outlet, is inhabited by way of piranhas, that are a threat for the unwary, even though they don't hinder the prudent Indian from bathing and drawing water. There are nonetheless a couple of Indian households scattered in regards to the marshes. From then on, we have been within the center of the Pantanal, which is composed, in areas, of waterlogged hollows among wooded crests, and in different places of colossal, muddy, treeless stretches. Saddle-oxen could were top-rated to horses; even if the heavier animals, that are guided by way of a rope undergone a nasal ring, boost slowly, they're higher in a position to face up to the laborious trips in the course of the marshes, the place the water is usually breast excessive. We have been on a simple which stretched might be so far as the Rio Paraguay and was once so flat that the water couldn't drain away, whilst there happened the main violent hurricane i've got ever skilled. there has been no hazard of take care of, now not a tree obvious anyplace. We had no selection yet to forge forward, soaked and dripping like our horses, whereas the lightning struck to correct and left like shells from an artillery barrage. After the ordeal had lasted for 2 hours, the downpour stopped and shall we see the rain squalls relocating slowly around the horizon as though we have been out at sea.