Roving reporter Nicola interviewed the mysterious Ilha de Marajo, an island the size of Switzerland from the Amazon River, North Brazil.

I like the people who live on me because they are very connected to me. I am their mother and father. I am criss-crossed by rivers, and the waters on me and around me have lots of different tastes. Where the rivers encounter the ocean it is said that the water has the taste of tears because the water is both sweet and salty.

Some of the rivers that travel across me and inside of me are yellow and noisy, yet at the same time very peaceful. You can spend hours listening to my waters because they are really impressive.

Mysterious Ilha de Marajo speaks


Strange things happen

I have cities, little towns, and also places where there are no humans. Actually, there are very few humans on me. Some places haven’t ever been inhabited by humans at all. It’s incredible.

Sometimes it rains on me. And when it rains the towns become completely messy because the streets are all earth and people slip and slide and fall over in the streets. Little kids play in the earth. They love it. I’m a happy place and also very strong. I am part of the Amazon yet at the same time I’m different. I have my own special feel. Over the years I’m a place that has been very spiritual.

A long time ago there was an indigenous culture that was very strong, powerful, and intelligent.  People from my island disappeared at some point and no one knows what happened. Everyone died.

There are lots of stories of strange things happening, of spirits of the forest, of spirits of the animals. So I’m an interesting place and also at times a bit scary.

Ilha de Marajo was interpreted by

Paola Garnousset, architect and co-founder of a start-up that makes furniture and objects out of waste material.  Paola first visited the island with her mother who was born in the region and works with indigenous communities.

Paola says to Ilha de Marajo

Don’t change. Keep being so truthful and full of energy. And I will come back to you.

Randomly tagged

Paola was invited by Nicola Gale at a biotech event in London, England when she was printing a vase made from mushrooms and waste with a 3-D printer.

Cover photo edited. Original by Jorge Brazilian.