every one in the group was Scottish, I wore my kilt and Glengarry hat and we taught them how to do the Highland Fling, The Gay Gordons and other Scottish dances.
We then travelled to a city called Iquitos in the Amazon jungle. Itís a city about the size of Glasgow (pop. 650,000); very poor; the kids lived in the rubbish dump. We were warned that the Peruvians didnít like Gringos (Americans).Its ironic that Americans are one of the biggest supporters of the charity I was with yet no-one seems to like them! We were told to be as inconspicuous as possible, which is quite difficult if you are over 6ft tall with a Glengarry bonnet and wearing a MacDonald tartan kilt! I was hidden at the back but some of the locals were spitting at the people in the front and calling them Gringos, but the same people who were doing the spitting wanted to shake my hand; so I was put to the front of the group and everyone was all smiles and cried out Escocia, Escocia . The Children we looked after were based about an hour up river by banana boat. They were in a terrible state, most had been badly abused, but we had brought Scottish shortbread, fudge, tablet and Edinburgh Rock, which they loved. The man who ran the orphanage was from North Carolina and he said that never in his life did he expect to see a Scotsman in a kilt in the middle of the Amazon Jungle!
It was pretty tough going in Peru but my eldest son Jamie and I are going back in June 2008. We will not be going to the jungle but we will be going again to the Yungay valley next to Mount Huscaran (22,500 ft) and then near to the ancient Inca capital of Cusco, where we will help rebuild the area that was devastated by an earthquake in 2007. We will of course wear our Kilts.
So far the Brethren of Dunbartonshire have donated almost £900 towards the minimum of £3000 needed for the trip and my son, Brother Jamie Marshall and I thank you for your support.
Brian Marshall IPM 195PGL Steward