The dreamy low-tide sunset is a stark contrast to the night sky of the Chocó. The clouds grow angry and bloated until they give way to a psychotic tantrum that threatens to wash the village into the sea. Every night in my bungalow, I lay awake listening. The lightning is ceaseless and judging by the thunder never more than a stone’s throw away. The drum of heavy rainfall on my thatch roof was liberating, however. Once liberated, the cockroaches, spiders and other critters joined me in bed and we’d all cower from the storm together. Once after an especially convincing downpour I found a scorpion the size of a chipmunk on my floor. I do have a picture of that guy, but why scare the children?
But the wild nights yielded days like those pictured and in the end made the place that much harder to leave. On my last night in the Chocó, I took a swim. The tumultuous froth of the Pacific carried the color of bioluminescent algae; in the flashing sky, I was aglow in green; the crash of the waves mixed with the roar of the thunder; and the rain beat down on the beach. The roaches and spiders missed out big time.