we were stopped by an extensive jam of fallen trees and compelled to turn back. After trying to go afoot through the woods and vine-tangleds to the open lagoon, where the wonderful Victoria Regia was growing. But the ground was so muddy and the vines so dense that the company declared it was going to be impossible to get to the lagoon, although it was only a few miles distant, and return to the tug before dark. So, sad to say, this grand trip, so full of promise, was in the main a failure. The Suabi Brothers had visited the lagoon the month before without difficulty when the water was five or six feet higher. Nevertheless, it was a wonderful experience for me. The great size and beauty of the trees, birds, butterflies, etc., the luxuriance of the vines and underbrush, etc. We ran out to a submerge island after returning to the tug and tied up to the limb of a tree and ate our luncheon. Thence to the Suabi residence, beautifully located. Lots of dogs, birds, monkeys, etc.c running free about the house, or secured in large cages. Many good books too. Thence back to the Sanford home in automobile. A memorable day. As an incident of the trip, we caught a chameleon, swimming a mile or so from land. It seemed quite tame and was easily captured. It was beautifully colored, the large scales arranged in striking order. It was about five feet long. The length of tail three and a half feet. Claws very sharp. Lives in trees. Was perhaps searching for a sand bank to deposit its eggs; so the sailors said. This handsome reptile made fine eating. The great river was ruffled here and there with a slight breeze, reflecting the blue sky like fairyland.
Original journal dimensions: 7.5 x 13 cm.
Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library
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John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist