Freedom's Just Another Word...
My best friend Jan Kalmusky and I flew from Toronto to a city located at the mouth of the Amazon River, Belem. After landing in this humid, equatorial old Brazilian port we set out to explore its beautiful colonial Portuguese architecture. Running along the dock by the river we found a vast open-air street market that sold all kinds of jungle fruits and Amazonian fish we had never seen before. Also for sale were indigenous handicrafts, a large array of young monkeys, colorful parrots and other rainforest animals I could not even name.
There was one adorable, baby squirrel monkey that we could not resist. We impulsively bought it and took it home to our hotel where we soon began to realize owning a monkey was a huge responsibility. After it pooped all over our hotel room the poor creature's charm began to fade. We couldn't possibly travel with this baby monkey so we took it to a local park knowing that someone there would take it in. I still feel immensely guilty for buying it. At the time I didn't understand that its mother had certainly been killed to capture it. Poor baby.
Soon after abandoning our little orphan we left Belem and started hitchhiking south east singing "Freedoms just another word ...". You see we heard that Janis Joplin had hitchhiked around Brazil so we thought if she could do it, we would too. Why not? We were two foolish, young, 23 year old blonde girls on the road to Rio. It seemed like a great plan.
has spent her life adventuring all over the world. If you enjoy the stories and travel writing tips in this blog, you will also love her books: Amazon Hitchhiker:A Woman’s Adventures from Canada to Brazil and her award-winning children's book Milo and the Mustang.