National Geographic : 1953 Aug
to dry and spread our notebooks on the grass. Unfortunately all the film in the cameras was ruined. Early that morning we heard the sound of a motor overhead and were surprised to see a heli copter coming down to land. The pilot proved to be Capt. Hal J. Basham of the U. S. Air Force's First Rescue Squadron at France Air Force Base in the Canal Zone. Captain Basham had come to investigate a human skull and bones found in the interior by rubber hunters, who thought they might be the remains of an American pilot lost during World War II. A reward had been posted for informa tion about his fate. After examining the skull, I was able to iden tifyitasthatofamid dle-aged native woman. Since Dick was anxious to wire Washington, D. C., for new cameras and to air-mail the exposed film not spoiled in the river, Captain Basham flew him to the base. Next morning Tumbaita Teeth Chippe arrived from Belen, and her captain kindly agreed An diana grkmi ern Panama grins p to take us back to Colon achieved by holding again. There were more Only the front teeth than 100 bunches of ba- a genuine "Panama" nanas to be put aboard, two heavy loads for the big 30-foot canoe. Now, it seemed, our troubles were over. But how wrong we were! When the men returned from taking out the second load of bananas, they said they were tired and would make only one more trip. Therefore all our baggage, plenty for two trips, was put aboard. A native passenger and a crate of live chickens were added. We had misgivings when one of the men told us that bucking the surf was so hard that one trip through it was worse than a full day with pick and shovel. Mendoza, the store owner, fortunately de cided at the last minute to go out with us. Marion and I sat on top of the cargo. Three of the crew were stationed aft and two forward. Each had a long, heavy pole to 289 .d to Points Are a Mark of Male Beauty in employed by the expedition in the jungle of north roudly in a display of his good looks. The effect is a rock behind each tooth and pounding with another. are pointed. The man is eating a palm nut and wears hat, locally made. use in crossing the bar and a paddle for the deep water. We did fairly well at first, got clear of the river mouth, and bucked the breakers for about 400 yards. The canoe rode deep in the water and was very sluggish. Waves Nearly Swamp Canoe We had just turned parallel to the surf to reach a spot where the waves were less heavy, when a big comber hit us, pouring a danger ous amount of water into the dugout. Mendoza bellowed, "We're too low! Work!" He took command, shouting orders. In a few seconds another wave struck, knocked Marion and me off our seats down into the open part aft, and washed Marion partly overboard. In the nick of time she was pulled back.