Memories of the welsh rain fade very quickly in the morning sun and warmth of a Belem morning. We are picked up from the hotel after breakfast by our friend and host Marlucia, invertebrate curator and fellow earthworm fancier, and taken to our first meeting with the Director of the Museum Goldi, who is a linguist scholar who studies history and relationship of the 50 languages that are found in the amazon region – yes that not a miss type 50 languages I have included a map of their distribution because I find it fascinating.
We next visited botanical collections to establish links between Tom and the Museum. I am not a botanical expert so I was very impressed to find a clone of the digitisation equipment that I had previously seen in Kew and impressed that the Botanical community has unified standard of digital data acquisitions that are used by botanical gardens world-wide. We also got shown one of the earliest samples in the collection – 1847.
After an enthralling conservation with Helena our Archaeologists contact and at the museum (see last year’s field blog) we had a great lunch at the institute then headed off to the airport. Marluica was coming to workshop in Porto Velho so she kindly drove us to the airport with her cousin acting as the driver to return the car after the drop off. This was going to plan until Marlucia remembered that she did not have the power cable for her laptop – we pulled up outside the her house and her cousin ran in……after 15 minutes and a number of frantic phones calls from Marlucia and the house she is presented with the large bag of associated wires, I wonder if anything in the house had a power cable left.…..it would happen the same in my house.
The internal flight to Porto Vehlo was relatively straight forward expect for the ‘flash-mob cheer’ that occurred before take off while we were stopped over in Manus – sorry I still don’t know what this was about but may be it should be a new tradition.