We woke up in Sao José do Amparo. Last night I felt really cold, it rained a lot, and during the night there was a lot of wind coming inside of the boat.
I slept in pants, socks, long sleeves, scarves and a rain jacket.
Yesterday it was actually quite interesting but I ll tell first the beginning of today. I was told this little village where we stopped was very intriguing. They were a sect.
Since we had 2 hours there for the delivery of goods I went up.
Literally up since you actually have to climb stairs to reach this little village. It was 5 am and from the boat I could see the population coming to buy goods. I asked from the people whether I could see the village. They told me I could. I went up, people of all ages sat in front of the church. It had a huge name.
Associação missao ordem cruzada catolica apostolica evangelica- templo de deus vivo
There were many people sitting in front of the church, they were dressed in white clothes. I asked whether I could go in. They told me I could. Men in the boat, huge men were shocked I entered that church. I asked about the church to the people and they told me to talk to the priest. And so they took me to his house.
I said hello to the priest and told him I would like to know about his church. I was honest and told him I was curious.
He was a man of few words. The village was particularly different. I asked him
“How is this church ?”
“I am honestly curious. It is not common to see a church that is at the same time catholic and evangelic.”
“It is the same.”
“Which book do you use?”
“Do you have baptism?”
“Yes in the river when they are 11 or 12”
“Oh, so when they are born nothing really happens?”
I was so fascinated. It seemed judaism, catholicism and evangelism together.
“How about the symbols?”
“The eye means we are being watched. The hand is peace. The book is the bible.”
I realised he would not tell me anything else. I had understood enough. The most I could understand in such a small time.
A little girl came up with us to the boat. She was the strangest girl I have eve met. She looked the whole time to Martin, the Uruguayan who was travelling with me.
The words of a new friend that lives in Boa Vista came to my mind.
“This area is a strange place. It is quite common for fathers to have sexual relationships with their daughters.”
Though he studied in the same school I have studied in Sao paulo, a french school, I thought he was exaggerating.
Only till I had a conversation with the little girl. She was also a secretive girl. She said few words, and simply because I asked questions. I have met children all over the world. Some of these children were badly treated, others were very well treated. It was the same in this boat. They all fell in the category of normality. This girl was so different.
She was 12. Responded almost without words. She was moving to live with her uncle. She was informed about it that day. Because I asked her, she said she was happy. I did not believe. I tried soo hard to talk to her and she simply barely spoke. She simply asked me whether my Uruguayan companion was my brother. The way she said it, made me certain she was abused.
I went to Angelica, the lady who became my friend and who works in the boat to ask about it. I was expecting her to say I was wrong. But she said.
“I want to become a lawyer to defend all women who have been abused. It is common in Amazonas for men to take the virginity of their
daughter. In Manaus they would put the men in prison, they would beat them up, but here it is common. If she is moving to live with her uncle it is much worse.”
I am now in Tabatinga. My internet connection is poor. I will write about what it was like to be in a boat for 8 days. I saw millions of things, I experienced a thousand of emotions. I love the boat,I made friends, my captain Mr Manuel is a kind man. He is evangelic so we obviously disagreed in thousands of things. But as usual I was protected, and learned a million of things. I’ ll write more from Manaus. The place I have friends, and have learned to miss.