Christmas Cheer

by Captain Bill

A Peruvian TV film crew is here making a fantasy jungle mini-series, with 20 installments. They are using Dawn on the Amazon III as the fantasy boat, and if I might modestly brag, me as the fantasy captain, ha, ha. Actually I did not make the cut, but at least the boat will be featured, and they said they would give me film of the boat to use as promotion. During one scene the villain was required to stab his knife into the rail. Of course they had to shoot that scene several times. It is hard to stab violetta.

We had a Christmas party for the crew and their children today with cakes, hot chocolate, and small presents. Things have gotten out of hand. Dave Sheriden, one of my friends who rents an apartment and office space from me, thought it would be a good idea to sponsor a similar program for the street kids along the boulevard here in my neighborhood. He bought 190 gifts and then went home to New Jersey for Christmas leaving us to hold the bag so to speak. The door bell rang this morning at 7. A tiny little girl who could barely reach the bell wanted to know if she could have her present yet. We gave out slips of paper with Dawn on the Amazon stamped on the paper, and each child was supposed to present the paper at 2 pm for a present. By 1 it was obvious we were going to have a riot on our hands, with 250 kids and 190 presents. We decided to start then.

My son Matt is visiting me in Iquitos. We were sitting on the balcony getting caught up and we watched a 10 year old take a 4 year old’s paper and he was going to get two gifts. I yelled down and they literally had to wrestle the second paper away from the little bully. I called Luis and yelled into the phone “Get down here now.” Ooops, wrong number. Anyway, we pulled it off with extra fruit cakes and pop, but it was very stressfull.

On December 23rd and 24th we are taking Dawn III on a Christmas Cruise up the Nanay River to deliver Christmas Cheer to poor jungle children in a couple of villages along the river where we have made some friends. Mad Mick will dress up like Santa Clause, and several of my friends and guests have donated money for presents. We have around 300 gifts wrapped. We have planned programs for hot chocolate, cakes, games, contests, etc., and expect it will be a Christmas like none the children have ever experienced. I want it to be unforgettable. Santa will ride in on the figurehead of my boat, instead of the traditional sleigh and reindeers. That makes me laugh just thinking of it.

If you would like to learn more about Dawn on the Amazon Tours and Cruises, please study my web site at

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