A few days ago I finally got to see some more of this beautiful country. I went together with a professor from the local univeristy and some students of her who are studying the womens role in rural areas. Very interesting to see their standard of living and get to know them a bit! On a bumpy country road we were 5 people that traveled to settlement Joana D’arc in the Amazon about 4h from the city, passing by an amazing scenery with animals and tropical plants. Me, entierly covered in mosquito repellent and covering clothing, sweating like never before. I saw some pretty cool animals such as salamanders, owls, vultures, a marmoset monkey, and a parrot!
We stayed with a woman named Dona María de Gracas Silva and her family, they were very humble people and I am so grateful that they opened their home to us. Dona María is a hard working woman, peeling mandioca from dusk til dawn while also growing other raw materials in the land they own by their house. The first day we had dinner together with them and their neighbours. We spent the night and I slept in a hammock for the first time, really nice experience.
In the settlement they cultivate and procuce several products that I had the oppotunity to see and taste. Their main product of export is cassava, or mandioca as it’s called here, which is a root vegetable traditionally used by many indigenous people in Latin America. The growers in the settlement export both the root and the flour – fariña which is milled to a fine granular consistency and then sifted. I’m not a fan of the flour, but boiled mandioca with some salt & butter is really tasty! In the pictures below you can see how it’s produced. Notable is that the women doing the heavy work done by hand; picking and peeling them, while the majority of the men handle the job done by machines…
Other products cultivated are coffeeplants, guava, lemon, peanuts, pepper and biribá & pupuña.