Children enter the jungle with nothing and exit with palm frond origami. Our guide, a craftsman of toys and tiaras, whistles and figurines, works wonders with a knife and jungle at hand. Tarantulas, squirrel monkeys, sloths, and macaws, an inexplicable lone white rabbit, kept as a pet and spotted (it’s worth noting) before the day’s cachaça consumption.
We slog in mud and chant to the children: You can do it; be tough! You can do it!, All the while wondering if they can. (They can). An eight-year-old fears the innocuous wasps and roaches, yet defends the ravenous mosquitoes. Mama, they’re just trying to feed their babies. She also enjoys the hammock all night while leg cramps plague the adjacent adults.