The people live with ingenuity, high efficiency and a type of grace. Stunning and awesome. The world is so much bigger a place than most of us realize.
I don't know of any classmates who have gone this far into the interior, although possibly missionaries and scientists have, or technologists, or medical personnel.
It's tempting for Westerners to think the people here lead lives of serenity on a placid natural force, but that would be an illusion. It's not accurate to say there is danger everywhere on the Amazon, or that it's deadly of itself. These people know exactly how to stay safe on it and avoid the dangers. We see them here in good weather, mostly in the daylight, and the people -- so remarkably sure footed in their boats and their water-level planks -- know how to survive. You'll meet several of them you'll probably love by the conclusion. We do not see the hundreds and thousands of live creatures everywhere, including leopards, jaguars, anacondas, crocodiles, piranha and river sharks -- except for one -- but they stay out of sight.
The mighty Amazon. The human spirit. The power of community.