Home  »  Through the Brazilian Wilderness  »  Page 374

Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919). Through the Brazilian Wilderness. 1914.

Page 374

lets the water through. A waterproof canvas floor is a luxury, and, though it adds to the weight, it may with advantage be taken on ordinary trips. The tent should be eight by eight or eight by nine feet, large enough to swing a comfortable hammock. A waterproof canvas bag, a loose-fitting envelope for the tent should be provided. Native help is, as a rule, careless, and the bag would save wear and tear.
  HAMMOCKS—The hammock is the South American bed, and the traveller will find it exceedingly comfortable. After leaving the larger cities and settlements a bed is a rare object. All the houses are provided with extra hammock hooks. The traveller will be entertained hospitably and after dinner will be given two hooks upon which to hang his hammock, for he will be expected to have his hammock and, in insect time, his net, if he has nothing else. As a rule, a native hammock and net can be procured in the field. But it is best to take a comfortable one along, arranged with a fine-meshed net.
  In regard to the folding cot: It is heavy and its numerous legs form a sort of highway system over which all sorts of insects can crawl up to the sleeper. The ants are special pests and some of them can bite with the enthusiastic vigor of beasts many times their size. The canvas floor in a tent obviates to a degree the insect annoyance.
  The headwaters of the rivers are usually reached by pack-trains of mules and oxen. The primitive ox-cart also comes in where the trail is not too bad. One hundred and sixty to one one hundred and eighty pounds is