Guinea pig - in a cage or on a plate?

Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
Trip End Feb 26, 2011

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Where I stayed
Jacaranda Hostel Inn

Flag of Peru  ,
Sunday, January 2, 2011

We woke up at about 7am and went to have breakfast before catching the train. With toast, cereal, yogurt etc it was fairly substantial. We gathered our stuff in a big bin liner type thing and set off with the girls to the train station. The train arrived and left on time with us on board. The train ride was great it followed the river for the most part but was painfully slow and fairly uneventful, never mind it gave us a chance to sooth our aching legs. The train was a random assortment of folks an eco warrior who was pretty cool in informing us of the most popular brand of water here (owned not surprisingly by Coca Cola) is loaded with added chlorine and other additives which do ensure the body remains unhydrated thus buying more water, all a little odd if true. He also collected up all the packaging that the bread sticks were served in and folded them all back flat and put them back in the serving compartment, explaining to the woman "these are trees which prefer to be in the forest than landfill so let's keep as many as we can in the forest". Fair play my good man.

When the train finally arrived in Ollanta (Ollantaytambo) the girls all needed the toilet so I loitered around the entrance to the women’s toilets (not for the first time in my life). Having been initially told our taxi back to Cusco maybe between 20 – 50 Soles per person, then Bill suggested it should be 20, we were left dumfounded by the first guy who approached and said we would take us all for 50 soles. After figuring out he was perhaps not an 'official’ taxi driver we accepted anyway and were soon on our way in a battered old car on the way towards Cusco. This is about the same price as the bus which apparently takes ages. About 1.5 hours later we rolled back into Cusco and it seemed like ages since we had left.

We wandered back to the boot rental place on Gringo Alley and got our deposit back despite the extremely smelly boots and slightly scratched poles that were given back. We got our deposit back and headed off with my sack on my back to go back to the hostel we still have very mixed thoughts about. We dumped the bags and went to try and find some WIFI. The cafe who’s WIFI we had been hijacking is either now gone bust or been shut down (after those fishy eggs I’m not surprised). We firstly tried the English pub called the Cross Keys, a nice local gent was behind the bar and didn’t speak English. I think we eventually got the point across that we wanted to use WIFI and needed a password. He responded by holding up a brochure of the pub and pointing to a name eg. Simon Jones, then said “password – Simon Jones is w*nker”, clearly this didn’t work but we nearly wet ourselves laughing as he kept repeating it over and over.

We then headed back to the other English pub the Real McCoy, the internet was very intermittent though and we couldn’t really do anything other than send a few very short e-mails. We then headed back to Gringo Alley and went to a restaurant called Chez Maggy. I had been wanting to try some guinea pig before we left but thought we would have to give it a miss as most places seemed to want around 50 soles (about 15) which is a bit steep really. We settled on Chez Maggy as it had a set menu including half a guinea pig, a Pisco sour (which was 13 soles on the menu) a starter and pudding for 20 soles. We seemed to time it about right as within 5 minutes of us going in it was heaving and chaos reigned supreme. We got offered about 5 pizza’s (other people’s orders) before we even got our starters. The place was pretty cool though and had a live band which was good. My starter was a Creole soup and Erica’s was nachos with guacamole something we have both grown to love in South America. We then got offered a couple more pizzas, a steak and some wine before our main course arrived. My Guinea Pig possibly looked less appetising than Erica’s burrito. We finished off our litre of beer and I wasn’t overwhelmed by the guinea pig, not something I would advocate raiding the pet shop for.  We didn’t get our pudding they insisted we paid up and left but we were full anyway so we thought giving our table up for the queue outside was reasonable. We wandered back and went straight to sleep, that was until the party started at least.
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Carlene on

I was in stitches at that password he gave you! I wonder what he was actually trying to say or if he was just having you on?

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