In spite of my fear that these waters will consume us without warning, I slept beautifully through the night. Our guides covered the canoes with massive leaves as we slept. The sound of the rain pelting the thick fronds over me all night –combined with the gentle rocking of the river– put me right to sleep.

During the day the canoes remain open, which means that whichever of our guides is not poling at the stern is bailing from the bow. That is how these two-man teams seem to operate.

The pilot of Dionus and my canoe calls himself Nonda, and speaks a little of the common tongue. The other three men do not speak it whatsoever, but that doesn’t mean they don’t speak. It’s as if they were completely unconcerned by our confrontation with the KoraKora yesterday. They spend their time singing songs and making jokes back and forth between our canoes.

The rain has no bearing on their spirits. They are happy simply to be on the water.

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Nonda said that Inifra found them a day or two after leaving us. She asked that they rush to bring us north. He said they must have missed us two days ago and only found us when they decided to double back.

Gods it feels good to sit and watch the world go by. What little of the world I can make out through the rain at least. Perhaps that is why I continue to fall asleep every couple of hours. I can finally rest while we let the current do its work. I cannot help but feel happy, even knowing the KoraKora are close. They could be a world away for all I care.

I can see how these canoe men maintain their sense of peace. We are afloat in tiny wooden sanctuaries, veiled on every side by water curtains. To hell with it, I’m going back to sleep.

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