WEIGHT: 52 kg
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Max size, 20 pounds. Used to motorize wooden canoes of all sizes. When reading quotes from the charactars in this journal, the reader should remember that all conversations took place in Brazilian Portuguese. The variations in accents and exact word choice I use here reflect the way I imagine that particular person would talk were he speaking in English, based on mannerisms, disposition, and voice inflictions.
Zezinho himself was presumably still out in the jungle, where we had left him that morning. Once aboard, whilst pissing over the side, I slip somehow and fall flat on my face in the mud, letting out a now-characteristic string of mixed Portuguese and English obscenities. Retire to hammock grumbling and dirty. Cindy, deep into her pre-sleep ritual, ignores this. Zezinho returned in the night, chainsaw all worn out. A difference between Amazonians and Americans: many Americans own chainsaws and other motorized things, yet few have any idea how to take them apart, service them, and then put them back together.
Every Amazonian who owns a chainsaw is also a chainsaw mechanic — oil-stained picnic tables and tree stumps across the region can attest to that. I walk with Cindy into town and stay with her until her taxi to the airport in Manaus arrives. I sit later with Zezinho and his now partially-assembled chainsaw on the oil-stained bench of the oil-drenched picnic table.
We sit for awhile. My host tells me the story of the numerous horrendous scars across his arms, back, and chest. So I call him a fucking thief. He slinks away, then comes back an hour later swinging a machete. I was in the hospital for three months. Lives a few blocks from here. Zezinho stared for a moment, then chuckled.
Zezinho asks me about the death penalty. Yes, they have it in Texas. He thinks for a moment. Slipped all the way to the bottom of the ice chest. Plenty of rice, at least. Zezinho gives me the thumbs-up and wishes boa viagem. The chainsaw, now fully assembled, sits next to him. I pass a crescent of sand loaded with Sunday leisure-seekers from the town and clogged with aluminum lanchas sporting 15HP outboards. I round a point and they disappear. The jungle is, once again, mine and only mine.