some women belonging to a group that lived further away arrived. Finding out where their lodges were, we set out for them, although the Indians pleaded with us to wait until the next day because these lodges were far away and there was no trail to them. They said that the women had arrived tired, but that after they had rested, they would leave with us the following day and be our guides. Nonetheless, we took leave of them. A short while later the women, who had come with some others from the same village, followed us.
Since there were no trails in that country, we lost our way and wandered around for four leagues. Then we reached a watering place where we found the women who had set out after us. They told us how difficult it had been for them to reach us. We left the place with the women as guides, crossing a chest-deep river in the afternoon. It was probably as wide as the river in Seville, with a swift current. At sunset we reached a place with a hundred Indian lodges. Before we reached them, all the people in them came out to greet us with a frightful shouting and a slapping of their thighs. They had hollow gourds with pebbles in them, which is a sign of great solemnity, since they bring them out only for dances and for healing ceremonies, and no one else dares touch them. They say that those gourds have powers and that they came from heaven, because there are none in that land. They do not know where the gourds come from, except that they are washed down by the rivers during floods.
These people were so awed and excited that they rushed to reach us and touch us. The press of the crowd was so great that they nearly squeezed us to death. They lifted us and carried us to their lodges without letting our feet touch the ground. They were pressing us so hard that we rushed into the lodges they had prepared for us, where we refused to consent to any more festivities for us that night. They spent the entire night dancing and in arevtos among themselves. The following morning they brought everyone from that village so that we could touch them and bless them as we had done