There are a lot of things going on in the small town of San Ignacio, Belize. You can go canoeing on the Macal River, walk uphill all the way to the incredible Mayan ruins, or watch a guy who’s lived on the same tree for over 6 years.
That’s right. If you walk to the Table Rock Jungle Lodge by Cristo Rey, you’ll find thousands of almost identical trees, with the exception of one, that, from far away, seems just like the others, except there’s a man living inside it, who’s called it home for the past 6 years.
Cynesige Gaufrid, a 56 year old who filed for bankruptcy in 2011, had decided there’s nothing better than living in the jungle for the rest of his life, and he’s been enjoying it so far.
“It’s good to get away from everything for a while.” Says Gaufrid, “I was stuck with a dead-end job, no savings, and a lot of debt.”
In 2011, Gaufrid walked out of his door, leaving his wife and two kids behind, and never came back. It wasn’t till a tourist who was staying in the Gallinule Cabana (a room named after one of the local rooms, overlooking the forest) saw him sitting on a branch, eating a Howler Monkey.
Yes, you’ve read that right. Gaufrid was first spotted eating a 7 Kg male monkey that he had hunted.
“It’s not just monkeys I eat. I take whatever nature throws at me. I like birds the best, but if you start hunting a lot of them the preservation groups will come after you, because people pay a lot of money to watch these creatures, and to be honest they are especially difficult to hunt.”
He’s also claimed to have eaten grey foxes, opossums, river turtles, and many more exotic creatures over the past 6 years.
When asked about his wife and children, Gaufrid says that he more of a burden than father and husband. He says that he knows nothing about them anymore, but he hopes his wife is doing better now. “I hope she’s happy.” Says Gaufrid, “She deserves nothing but happiness. She really put up with me a lot.”
Gaufrid is expected to be asked to leave the forest by the authorities now that natives know where he stays, but Gaufrid says that he will simply delve deeper into the forest and choose a new tree. A new home.