Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Vipers and Giant Sponges

July 15, 2009

I’m pretty sure the hugest bug in the world bit me today. It felt like someone stabbed me in the back of the leg. We had a little excursion to the Sooma nature reserve to see the bogs and go canoeing. The canoe trip was great. I’d forgotten how much I enjoy doing that. I think we went 7km or something like that. Once we made it to our destination we hiked out to see the bogs, which actually form hills. It’s so crazy looking. It’s kind of like a giant sponge attached to the earth. Usually when I think of bogs, I guess I kind of think of swamps, which are in low grounds but that certainly wasn’t the case for these. It was also interesting to learn that these bog-hills are growing every year, just absorbing more and more water I guess (they seriously are like giant sponges). Nothing really lived there, just some insects, small lizards and apparently vipers, as in the venomous snake kind of viper (yipes!).  I actually thought for a moment that that’s what bit me (yes, it was that painful). It didn’t help that at that moment I was running because the mosquitoes were so ridiculously bad, and I heard a big splash in the water next to me right after it happened. I don’t feel like I’ve been poisoned and my leg hasn’t fallen off yet so I’m assuming it was just a very large, hungry, evil fly.

There were also these really cool little lakes or ponds in the bog, which people enjoy swimming in. They’re really really deep and dark looking, and they don’t get deep gradually; there are just sudden deep pools in some spots. But they had little docks and ladders off of some of them for swimming. The water was a really interesting color. It looked a lot like Coke. It was a really cool area to see though, and I’m glad we got to do that. I’d much rather go on an adventure than sit in a 3 hour lecture.

After our hike into the bog, we sat by the river and ate the most delicious meal I’ve had in this country. There was a soup that reminded me of Italian Wedding Soup, some kind of sweet barley bread, pirukas (little meat and rice filled rolls), cake, and something sort of like kinderbeer. It was absolutely delicious. I’m sure my ravenous hunger after skipping breakfast, canoeing a few miles, and then hiking a mile or so also helped.

Now all I want to do for the rest of the day is shower and sleep forever.

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