Katrina Pham Ms. Leang English 1 HP, Period 1 3 October 2012 Lost in a Forest “It’s too dark, Katrina. I can’t see! ” cried Christopher, my baby cousin. “Slow down! If I lose you, the monsters are going to swallow me whole. ” I heard him, but his whimpers only exacerbated the situation, which was already worsening by the second. The sun had nearly disappeared behind the mountain, and the darkness was quickly claiming the night. Out of instinct, I grabbed his hand and we ran as quickly as we could wherever there was a path.
Not even in my wildest dream could I have imagined how easily our pleasant afternoon stroll could turn into the chilling experience of my life, the night Christopher and I got lost in the forest by ourselves. With each of us and our crazy schedules, summer was the best time for my entire family to unwind and enjoy a delightful vacation together. It was quite the struggle trying to agree on the perfect destination. “I think we should go to Africa and see that fat giraffe I saw on Tumblr,” I suggested as my family listened to my silly reasoning. “Be quiet, weirdo.
Deciding because of tumblr is just foolish. Let me and Percian decide, so we’d at least have a better reason,” Leon, my 16-year-old brother, retorted back almost instantaneously. “If you like animals so much, what about going to the Brazilian Amazon? There’s nice scenery and pretty animals, I think,” My 17-year-old brother, Percian, said excitingly. “Oh really? Like that’s a better reason! ” I giggled, pointing at Leon. “Let’s hope no one gets lost in that forest,” Percian chuckled and glared at me. Surely, he should have knocked on wood after that, but no one could have seen what was in store for us.
Nevertheless, it was settled; my parents decided to go with Percian’s idea, and to bring Chris along while his parents were on a business travel. We stayed at the Tropical Manaus, a hotel that was just 50 yards from the forest. Tropical Manaus had a beautiful pool centered between two tall buildings, with a coffee shop nearby. The suite we stayed in had a warm element that reminded us of home. From the patio, you could see a forest of palm trees bordering a stunning yard that housed a mini zoo packed with colorful parrots, playful monkeys, and even frolicking baby leopards. Tropical Manaus was truly an exquisite resort of the Amazon.
My parents unpacked as I ran to find Chris. My mom yelled for both Leon and Percian to look after me, but they were busy with their own exploration. Chris chased me around the lobby, filled with excitement since we knew Brazil would be the perfect place to play hide and seek. We ran and laughed nonstop, as we found different places to hide. Caught up in the moment, I could not care about anything more than our simple chasing; much less realize how far we were from our protection of our guardians. And, it was that neglectful and irresponsibility that would lead to the greatest terrifying experience of my life.
After nearly an hour of playing, Chris and I decided that this was the last round of hide and seek. So, I ran to find the ultimate hiding place. I hid under behind one of the palm trees, and heard my cousin’s footsteps. Not wanting to get caught by him, I swiftly dashed away from the zoo towards the farther palm tree. Although little did I know by then, we were unintentionally running into the Amazon Forest. I thought afterwards what a poor job my brothers had done looking after me. When my cousin and I cooled off, we looked around for a way back to the hotel.
Eventually, none of scenes around appeared familiar. There was a moment when I thought we had walked into a maze that did not lead you near the final destination even if you strolled back to your previous traces. “Oh My God! I am so not going to sleep here! We got to find our way back before it is dark,” I declared to my cousin. But, the insistent breeze blew the trees back and forth relentlessly, yielding eerie noises and creepy shadows throughout the forest. My cousin looked as pale as the fog surrounded him. My head kept twirling back and forth to search for any hint back to the hotel.
We wanted to search back to the place where we started, but it seemed impossible. I suspected the trees itself for hiding the right path. My cousin and I lost track of time while we circled around the forest like vagabonds. “It is already pitched black! I’m sleepy. Let’s stop somewhere and sleep,” Chris whined. “Are you crazy? Sleeping in the middle of a forest? Bugs will bite without mercy! ” “Whatever, you’re just over thinking it because you’re scared of animals and insects! ” We walked around nowhere until the discord work of the night creatures began soon after the sky became entirely dark blue.
The cacophony of the birds could make me stay up all night. I told myself however people symbolize birds, their singings are not even delicately close to a harmony. I could still see the animals flawlessly flying above the sky either to end their day or to start it. It was quite bizarre to know that birds never stopped for one moment and pondered how alluring their home is. About an hour later, we stopped to rest on the biggest tree we could find, since it offered more protection. The tree was probably a hundred feet in height, and each branch was as massive as a king-sized bed.
I helped Chris climb up to the tenth branch, while I climbed after, afraid that I might lose balance and fall from such height. My stomach growled angrily and my throat left completely dry. For some time, I thought I was about to die from hunger and dehydration, not counting numerous poisonous bugs and flies might be wandering somewhere around. My feet felt funny and tickled, so I looked down to my feet. Under there was a lengthy line of ants that were one inch in length. In front of me appeared six spider webs (but good thing the spider was not found). Behind me, I saw a long, about seven inches scorpion-looking creature.
It was skinnier than a scorpion, but had eight extended, stick looking legs with a pale peach color. The legs moved around slowly similar to crab speed and it had huge black pepper eyes larger than three inches in diameter. On the right was a smelly crow with strange color eyes staring back at me. On the left were three earwigs three centimeter in size with pale yellow wings and cricket’s legs. The earwigs had oily dark brown skin and hard armor bodies like a flying cockroach. The fact that I could perceive the nature directly in the Amazon had virtually gave me an opened eye nightmare. Aaaaahhhh! Oh My Freakin’ God! What are these sickening things!? ” I shouted more than talk and started jumping up and down to kill as much ants as possible. I deeply had abhorrence for animals and insects since I was a child. And now they were creeping right on my feet. “Calm down! I brought a mini Raid with me! ” My cousin screamed after me and took a Raid and started spraying everywhere. I closed my eyes and still jumping around. The thump-thump-thump of my heart was beating at the same time as the thump-thump-thump of the creatures that were running away from us barbarians.
I could now feel the dead animals lying on my feet. At least I was wearing socks. Thankfully my throat stopped me from puking. My senses came back after I tortured myself with my own ear-splitting screaming. I was more tired from shouting than walking a thousand of miles. Swiftly, I set back the moment when my cousin started spraying the insects on the branch and thought: What the hell? He brought a mini Raid? This boy literally had severe problems. “Why do you have mini Raid in your pocket? ” I asked my cousin while we settled down on each side to sleep. I found it in the lobby and took it away for fun,” my cousin replied, laughing at the same time. What a strange kid! I thought to myself. We dozed off while gossiping about our family. From what I could recall, I had an undisturbed, peaceful sleep. My cousin held my hand tight like superglue that was spread all over his palms. I felt safe and less naked in this hard king sized branch bed. All the same, the image of fear still cleverly crossed my mind and his in every course of the way. I sluggishly opened my eyes when the sun shined agitated directly at me, reminding myself the earsplitting alarm clock at home.
It seemed almost too odd to wake up in such a beautiful, mild morning. Around my views were little teardrops of sunshine squeezing through the limited space of the leaves. Suddenly, I heard noises of footsteps and then someone cried out, “We found them! ” I was tired and dizzy to care. Someone shook my shoulder hard and yelled out my name. I began to wipe eyes, regained my strength and memories from yesterday. My eyes landed on the person that was calling my name. It was the hotel manager. He looked relieve and in some way seemed to be expert in finding people, especially when they were on the tenth branch.
How many people had gotten lost in this forest? I began asking myself nonsense questions. For a moment, I did not want to come down due to the firing wrath of my parents I predicted when I got off the tree. Eventually I came down because I thought of my brothers and they must have gotten a worse punishment than me. “Are you crazy? Why did run in this forest? ” My dad asked, in a quite calm tone. My mom, however, “Your cousin just might disappear with you! What were you thinking? Did you know how concern we were!? ” She sounded like she could scream at any moment.
She scolded me some more while my dad held my cousin, although I was too tired to hear anything. My brothers sat next to me back in the hotel, looking very guilty. After an hour of lecture, we acted like nothing happened. I did not want to speak of my adventure in forest anyways. “You know you should have knocked on wood when you said, ‘let’s hope no one gets lost. ’” I told Percian when we were at the hotel’s pool. “How old school could you be? ” He said, laughing hard. Being lost in a forest was a lot different than being lost in the streets. There was no corner to be indecisive whether to turn left or right.
It was just a vast space of plants and animals. I recalled some memories when I imagined myself living for eternity in this forest and kidnapped by an Indian tribe. I recognized more about responsibility, thanks to the petrifying journey in the Amazon. I no longer depended on the thought that someone would always be there for me. My life lesson taught me to be careful with too much “fun. ” I hated the moment when I, alone, had caused a chaos for not just myself, but also the people that are close. It gave me a natural instinct of thinking before anything and opening my eyes at all time.
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