Monday, April 18, 2005

Lost Amazonians are Out of Time

Deep in the Amazon jungle, I stumble along a sodden track carved through steamy undergrowth, frequently sinking to my knees in the mud. Leading the way is a busy-bearded, fiery-eyed Brazilian, Sydney Possuelo, South America's leading expert on remote Indians tribes and the last of the continent's great explorers. Our destination: the village of a fierce tribe not far removed from the Stone Age. We're in the Javari Valley, one of the Amazon's "exclusion zones"—huge tracts of virgin jungle set aside over the past decade by the government of Brazil for indigenous Indians and off limits to outsiders. The group we've come to visit are known as the Korubo, but I'm thinking of another of their nicknames, the "head bashers."

I started this article at the Dr's Office yesterday. Totally engrossing. It's hard to imagine that there are still "lost" tribes out there with no knowledge of the larger world, who live an alien lifestyle without Western laws and Mores. Check it out.

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