Contemplations South America

The Scariest Night Of My Life

Let me tell you about the scariest night of my life.

First let’s start with the fact that I have an overactive imagination. I’ve had it since I was a young kid and I never seem to have lost it. I’m not ashamed of it or anything like that, I’m actually very proud and I credit it for some of my creativity.  Most of the time it’s something I rather enjoy. There are other times, like when you’re in the Amazon, that it ends up being a horrible, frightening thing.

So when Stephanie and I booked our Amazon Jungle Tour , we agreed it was an absolute must to spend a night in the jungle. Sleeping deep in the forest beneath the canopy of the trees and among the stars.

Amazon Jungle - Amazon, Brazil

Everything was set up for the evening.

Preparing Dinner - Amazon, Brazil

The Hammocks strung up with mosquito nets to match.

Jungle Camp - Amazon, Brazil

Our bags and shoes hung up above the ground to allow for no unwanted guests to take up residence.

And that is when I went crazy.

It’s a hard to describe the exact level of fear I was experiencing. Being alone in the dark and only relying on your senses. Hearing becomes heavily heightened in the already unbelievably loud environment. I could hear everything everywhere and all around me. Crickets, croaks, slithers, splashes in the water down by the creek, in which raw chicken had oh so conveniently been tossed earlier. Howls, growls, footsteps, rustles of the trees, leaves, buzzing of the various unknown beetles and mosquito like flies trying to get into my hammock.

And then the last fading sources of light, our fire slowly crackling out and the last wisp of a candle fading, hissing into darkness. Pitch Black, removing all sense of where these sounds could possibly be coming from and leaving you utterly blind and helpless to your environment.

It didn’t help that my hammock was tied at the edge of the forest by the river bed, which is a hot spot for nocturnal activity.

Hammock in Jungle Camp - Amazon, Brazil

Dinner - Amazon, Brazil

It wasn’t the small things that I was scared of. It wasn’t the small rodents I knew were scrounging around the leftover bags of uncooked vegetables poorly strung up over a log. It was the single thought that I could get attacked by a Jaguar, of all things. This is what I was most scared of, something so statistically unlikely I’d have a better chance at winning the lottery.

Regardless of reasoning, I let my imagination run wild with what-ifs that elevated my fear to a level where I was literally paralyzed in my hammock.  Everyone fell asleep by about 9-9:15pm, I eventually closed my eyes at around 2:15-2:45am and woke up again at 4:10am and stayed awake for dawn.

Of course, you all know the end results. I survived, wasn’t attacked by anything, and I got to witness dawn, which is truly something spectacular. The deep, dark tones of night melting away, replaced with chirps and squeaks and squawks so loud you instantly knew they would frighten everything scary from the previous night away.

Now you might ask in hindsight, “Would I ever do it again?” The answer is simply no. Somethings are better left to the imagination.

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16 Comments

  • Reply
    Björn
    December 29, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Hey Nadine,

    do you see me?

  • Reply
    Alex
    December 29, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Yay, comments are fixed! Guess you had to switch back to you old style comment box. I had sent you an email about a common problem with the other kind of comment box you had, but i didnt really know much about the topic, so it could have been useless lol.

    But this was an awesome blog. You have done a lot of crazy and cool things but this has to be one of the top in my book. It is one of those things that you see on tv and learn about but you never think you will experience first hand. I would love to take a trip like this! I am a bit curious why you left with a bit of a sense of disappointment (that you mentioned in the last post) though, but its still great info for whenever I am able to take a trip like this someday.

    -Alex

    • Reply
      nadine
      January 3, 2013 at 12:58 am

      There will be another post all on that explaining why I felt disappointed. :) Stay tuned, it will be out soon.

      And thank you for your help with the comments, it’s still a work in progress :)

      • Reply
        Alex
        January 5, 2013 at 10:00 pm

        Ahh, neat… looking forward to that then and the rest of your trip as well.

        And you’re welcome, I had a lot of free time lately so I tried to help! If you still ever wanna discuss the site, or need help with that kind of stuff, you have my email.

        -Alex

  • Reply
    Adam
    December 29, 2012 at 5:30 pm

    Another test. Luv ya Nadine!

  • Reply
    Rebecca
    December 30, 2012 at 5:30 am

    this makes me want to go to the Amazon even more…strangely enough :P :D

    • Reply
      nadine
      March 12, 2013 at 1:23 pm

      :) Just go in the wet season

  • Reply
    jimmbboe
    December 30, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    I wouldn’t ever consider this – like you I have an overactive imagination!

  • Reply
    Taya
    December 30, 2012 at 6:28 pm

    Was this the upstream or downstream tour or neither one?

    • Reply
      nadine
      March 12, 2013 at 1:22 pm

      This was the Upstream tour.

      • Reply
        Ilana
        November 8, 2014 at 9:56 am

        approx. how much do these tours cost?

  • Reply
    Robert
    February 28, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    Great Story! I’d love to visit the Amazon one day!

    • Reply
      nadine
      March 12, 2013 at 1:20 pm

      Thank you :) Glad you enjoyed it. I’ll have a few more stories coming out about the Amazon soon :)

  • Reply
    Andrey Resende Zenith
    May 23, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Hey I was looking at some videos in internet and I found u… u way of life is amazing! travel is the best thing ever! ive been in some places too but never in amazonia. and trust me u have alot of courage to go there, but i hope i do it too! I wish some day we meet in some place or airport. See u around! xx

  • Reply
    Mariana
    February 22, 2014 at 9:00 am

    This is nice! I live in Brazil and believe me, u can find all kinds of places here!

  • Reply
    #60Days in Paradise | Hey Nadine
    March 12, 2014 at 1:46 pm

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