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We were in a village one day and had just just finished a Kid’s Program at the church. We walked outside and saw a huge tarp that was spread out in the front “yard.”  Typically in villages they dry corn,  or bamboo reeds to make musical instruments, on huge tarps under the hot Amazon sun, turning them to completely dry and then take it to the market to sell. 

Well this particular tarp was covered in little green leaves.  Thousands of them. We had no idea what they were. Just looked like leaves from a tree. We asked a man who was “sweeping” the leaves what he was drying and it turns out –he was drying cocaine leaves. 

Cocaine closeupHere in Peru there are various uses for the cocaine leaf.  The obvious reason is to manufacture drugs, yet they also use the leaves to make tea as an aid to prevent altitude sickness. Many people also chew the leaves to curb hunger. That’s what they claim at least!  In the Jungle, rarely are we ever surprised by what we see.  But walking out of the small village church and seeing a tarp full of “drugs”… that was a first for both of us!!! 

So naturally, what did we do with a tarp full of drying cocaine leaves???  Play in it and take pictures!!! And then get the heck out of there.

Cocaine and best friends Cocaine in the jungleNothing but drying leaves…

Still In His Mighty Grip,


Here is a picture of the dog who stood “watch” over the leaves.  Think he had sampled too much of the product…

Dog eating cocaine