Klára Čermáková

Thanks to mobility support of CZU, I was allowed to visit the Peruvian Amazon, where I collected samples for my diploma thesis dealing with the genetic diversity of Camu-Camu (Myrciaria dubia), which is a tree that produces high-content of vitamin C fruits. To collect these samples first had to go to Iquitos, which is available only by boat or plane, so I spent 5 days on a huge ship in the hammock, talking to people with my broken Spanish, playing with the kids and watching Milky Way at the night on the top floor.

During the Iquitos month trip, I visited the countryside, which was amazing ... to see, but also to life the life of the villager in the Amazon, where there is no rain water the only source of water is coconut or masato, to see what they eat and how they deal with the mosquitoes which are everywhere.

Then I went back to Pucallpa, where we had place to life through our stipendium with the university of Pucallpa, there was another part of collection in this city i had to choose the fields of Camu-Camu myself and go blindly to some field and ask if I could collect the samples. But you have to have in mind that the farmers usually have dogs and he should be careful.

Collection in Peru was quite simple, just to select the leaves, dry them using silica gel and bring them to Czech Republic. And now there is the harder part, when I’m a lot of time in laboratory, but the memories on Peru is making it easier and I will always be grateful for the fact that I could live there for a while and to have so many new experience. And that's why I advise you if you can - Just GO!

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