I was working on a draft of our final presentation in my hotel room this week when flashes of light from between the curtains began consistenly lighting up
my room. When I peered out the window to see where it was coming from, thinking it was probably from a police vehicle on a routine traffic stop, I realized
it was coming from the sky.
I walked outside onto the deck of our hotel, and saw that the sky over the jungle was being lit up by lightning every half a
second; it was the most impressive and severe lightning storm I had ever seen. Such is life in Tarapoto, but for someone that has never experienced the
weather of the rainforest, I had to grab a tea and watch.
On Tuesday, as Eric and I were focusing on ways to ensure that cacao and coffee farmers are using the proceeds from the loans they receive on inputs, we
met with three fertilizer producers and distributors in Tarapoto. We had very productive conversations with all three of them, and obtained helpful
information that we will include in our recommendations to TechnoServe and USAID. The fertilizer warehouses were very impressive, with stacks of fertilizer
organized neatly based on the compound and type of local product the fertilizer would be used for.
After meeting with the fertilizer suppliers in the morning, Marco, a member of the TechnoServe staff in Tarapoto, took us to the restaurant he and his wife
recently opened. For a couple of years, Marco and his wife prepared and sold food from their house, which was a popular stop among the locals and even last
year’s EEP group. Four months ago, they decided to formally open their restaurant, and the ceviche they served was one of the best meals we have had in
Peru. Marco and Angel, two of the leaders of the TechnoServe office in Tarapoto, have been extremely welcoming and kind to us. It has been a pleasure
working with them, along with the other members of the TechnoServe staff in Tingo María, over the last month and a half.