Yanachaga Chemillin National Park

I’m excited. I’ve been flitting around the edge of this massive, incredibly dramatic and diverse Peruvian National Park for over a year and never went in. We’ve been passing one of the entrances all this time. I asked Ivan where the park was, and he said, “You know the big bridge just before Isco? We…

Healing Carina

Wildlife conflicts with human interests have been making the news a lot lately. As our world becomes more hot and crowded we’re going to hear these stories frequently. This essay is my short, simple response to this very complicated problem. One I’ll probably revisit. The line is sometimes blurry between intentional cruelty and side effects of populations competing…

Language Doesn’t Come in a Box (but sometimes it’s a good way to get started)

Secoya. Tariana. Pacahuara. Mawayana. These are a few of the hundreds of critically endangered languages in the Amazon Basin. Beneath the layers of trees, water, birdsong, and people paddling, there is a reservoir of knowledge and depth of experience to be found in the thousands of languages there, each representative of unique, enduring cultures. Sharing words…

Yanesha Hands Nurture Cotton Diversity

Text and images by Niki Faller. UNAUTHORIZED USE AND/OR DUPLICATION OF THIS MATERIAL WITHOUT THE EXPRESS AND WRITTEN CONSENT OF THE SITE’S OWNER IS EXPRESSLY PROHIBITED. Art that occurs in the transitional zone between the Andes mountains and the lowland Amazon Basin is bound by the rivers and heat that mark the place. Ways of life…

Love is an Adventure

As many of you readers may have surmised, this blog is no longer about a singular theme, an expedition down the Amazon, but rather is about many dimensions of the Amazon Basin: culture, landscape, travel, wildlife, media, and so on. In an earlier post I mentioned that in 2012 my husband and I took our…

Film Review: Amazônia Eterna

Amazônia Eterna is different than most footage you’ll see about the region. This is the first Brazilian made documentary about the Amazon that rose to international viewership that I’m aware of, one so successful that you can rent it on YouTube or Amazon.com. The film is a series of case studies narrated by big entities (governments,…

Everyday Object Study

Selection of objects from Palcazu Valley. All images Niki Faller Please support indigenous culture and Hard Light Equator with your purchases here. Don’t see anything you need today? There is a donation box at the bottom of the market page. Yuca and Zungaro Fish lunch   Handspun, Woven Colored Cotton   Coffee Drying   Plant Dyed…

Puerto Mayro and Environs

Puerto Mayro is a frontier town along the Rio Palcazu, at the bottom of the valley. Media recorded May 4, 2016. ©Niki Faller, Rubisco Makes, LLC. 2016. All Hard Light Equator content protected. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without the express and written consent of the site’s owner is expressly prohibited. Excerpts and links…

Water Life in Palcazu Valley

Refreshing and healing, water is metaphor for life and substance of birth and beginnings. Here are a select few photos celebrating our bond and affection for water and it’s fruits, taken between April 29 – May 9 in Palcazu Valley. ©Niki Faller, Rubisco Makes, LLC. 2016. All Hard Light Equator content protected. Unauthorized use and/or duplication…

Missing Fawcett

On the eve of my departure for Peru I finished “The Lost City of Z,” by David Gramm. Percy Fawcett was another famous Amazon explorer chronicled in the book. Fawcett disappeared in 1925 during an expedition to find El Dorado. The book hit me harder than expected when I checked it our from the local…

5 Yanesha Climate Justice Interviews

On this Earth Day 2016 I’m pleased to share these links to the 5 Yanesha climate justice interviews we contributed to “The Art of Change: Indigenous Peoples for Climate Justice”, an exhibition at the Institute of American Indian Arts, in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Side by side with Winona LaDuke and Robin Wall Kimmerer, the…

What Do You Go Looking For?

When I travel, I go looking for a hot, humid, fragrant place where I can take five or six deep, loud breaths and feel the inside of my lungs cleansed from the inside out. Then I can do it again in a half an hour and it’s as if I’m wearing a new skin. It’ll be a…