The Odyssey

 
 
Basecamp
Trek Connect
Time Machine

 
 
Home  
Kevin Dispatch

Learn HEBREW (In Peru???) or SINK!

Click image for larger view
Lucky Kevin psyching himself up for a rafting trip down the Urubamba River with four women.
caption
First thing in the morning, I usually say "Hola, buenos dias" (good morning) in Spanish. However, today I hear "Shalom, boker tov!" in Hebrew. Wait, what's that? I thought I was in Peru! Well, today I am going rafting with six people from Israel. They all speak Hebrew instead of Spanish. The only native Spanish speaker with me is Pablo, our cameraman. Boy, am I in for a treat!

Inflating the raft takes a lot of time so I have time to get to know the other rafters: Einav, Merav, Keren, and Dikla. Rowing down a wild river is hard and can be dangerous, unless you follow some very simple safety instructions. Of course the instructions are given in Hebrew and I have a hard time understanding. I think the guide says "Don't dance in the boat or hit each other over the head with the paddles," but he could have just said, "Wear your lifejacket!" After awhile, I learn a few words from watching: kadima is row forward, astor is stop, and smol ahora means left back.

Flowing down the Urubamba river, the sun is shining, the water is calm, and everything is beautiful. We pass the cows, sheep, campesinos, and ducks who are laughing at us easily-sinkable folks wearing our funny red helmets and matching lifejackets. Soon we head under a small bridge and I have an idea. What if we jumped off the side and landed in the waters below!? Aye, aye, aye!!! The water was COLD!

Click image for larger view
How easy does this look?
caption
Our guide tells us that the upcoming part of the river is extremely rough, and full of dangerous rapids. We gather together our confidence and head straight for the waves! My Hebrew is improving because I can now tell the difference between "Kadima" (forward) and "KADIMAAA!!!" which means row NOW and FAST or the raft is going to overturn with the next wave! Water is everywhere, in my helmet, my mouth, my (very) wetsuit, and if I had more hair, it would be there too.

Click image for larger view
Ahhhhh! KADIMAAA!!!
caption
We're rushing faster and faster down the river before we know it, we head straight for the HUGE ROCK sticking out of the water only 30...20...10 feet directly ahead of...CRASH! SWOOSH! KANISH! We run straight into it, and are stuck there for twenty whole minutes! (Mom! Help!!)

What next? We get off the rock and back into the boat, and I think we can finally relax when…KADIMA!!! Together all six of us plunge our oars into the freezing water and SPLASH! We dive down into a hole. MAMASH! We just make it out before the next wave comes, and on and on we go! Kadima! Ahora! Atsor! Yamin ahora! KADIMAAA!!!

Kevin

Monica - All Dressed Up with Nowhere to Go... La Fiesta del Gran Poder
 
Meet Kevin
 
Meet Kevin
  Basecamp | Trek Connect | Time Machine
Home