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Willow Murton

Korma Conspiracy

Posted from: Ushpayacu
There is something conspiratorial about the gathering outside the hostel tonight. Hunched over and concentrated, the crew sit and eye each other with suspicious hunger, each clasping their own chosen packet of ration food.

Pete, the new sound recordist, and an initiate still on this Amazonian journey, reveals his folly in over-watering his sweet and sour chicken. Matt Norman has proven himself as a veteran on these river journeys. Sustained on the varying tinned delights of peaches and hotdogs on the last shoot, this time he comes with Christmas gifts of a camping kettle, and sits and awaits with his carefully selected spaghetti bolognese dinner packet.

Distrust and culinary critique fill the gaps between the kettle boiling. Was Steve's praise for the chicken korma genuine or merely a ploy to attain the chilli con carne for tomorrow's dinner? When it comes to food and boat seats, strategy is everything, as Pete is quickly learning. Lessons are learnt fast on the river.

As we set off from Yurimaguas to San Lorenzo on our overloaded boat, Bruce and Matt reclined with professional ease, settled between the spray of the water and the edges of the boxes. Pete sat bolt upright in the middle seat opposite and suffered the attentions of a large cockroach for the journey as Steve and I dozed alongside. The persistence of insect attractions to our new team member continued at dinner that night as mosquitoes gorged on his legs. A cold beer washes down tonight's Amazonian insights and Steve's curry. Tomorrow, Andoas awaits.


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