Inca Trail Day 3: I am not a happy camper
Trip Start Sep 28, 2006
99Trip End May 04, 2007
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
After we went to bed last night, I started to feel worse and worse and I tossed and turned for a couple hours before I finally had to leave the semi-warmth of my sleeping bag (I had on every article of dry clothing and was shivering inside my silk liner and arctic sleeping bag), find my flashlight, put on my wet muddy boots and run in the pouring rain to the nasty campsite bathroom. I was very sick, I'll spare you the details. I ran back to the tent, curled up in a ball wishing for it to all end and trying to get warm again. After dozing off for a bit, I woke up again, feeling worse than before and having to once again get dressed and run out to the bathroom. I tried calling out the names of my guides at around 3 am, mildly freaking out, but everyone was of course asleep (or at least pretending not to hear me so they wouldn't have to go out into the rain and deal with me). So I spent most of the night alone in the awful bathroom, freezing and miserable, until about 4 am, when I headed back to the tent, took a Cipro, and shivered half-awake in my sleeping bag for the next couple of hours. Needless to say, I did not get much sleep.
I felt horrendous when Efrena "woke me up" at 6 am. He took one look at me, asked if I was okay, and I burst into tears, as I was so dehydrated, tired, in a huge amount of pain and absolutely freezing. I had one oral re-hydration pack in my medical kit, which he prepared for me. My stomach was in no way prepared to accept any food, and even getting down the nasty salty-sweet mixture was a bit difficult. But I forced myself to drink it, as I was so weak I could hardly move and was freaking out about the hike ahead of me...and the fact that there would be only one bathroom, at lunch time. I made it to the breakfast tent a little late and tried to eat some plain, stale bread for energy as I jealously watched everyone else enjoy hot chocolate, omelettes, french toast, banana chips, and coffee. For those of you who know me, I am sure you can imagine that not being able to enjoy freshly cooked banana chips was such torture! I love anything with bananas. Definitely was being punished for my previous day's gluttony. Apu, our cook, made me a special tea, which tasted pretty nasty and did not really help all that much, but it felt nice to put something warm in my body.
We left at 7:45 am and immediately began our ascent up to the second pass, Quchapata (3950 m). The rain still had not stopped since the previous morning. I saw a nice waterfall as we started hiking and thought to myself, well, I wouldn't get to see this in the dry season! Ha.
When we arrived at the campsite around 11 am, I booked it to the bathroom and then collapsed in the lunch tent as Jubinal discussed the ruins we had just seen as well as some other Inca topics for an hour or so. As soon as I sat down I totally crashed, my legs throbbing from pounding downhill in the cold and my stomach still churning. I tried eating some crackers and drinking tea to re-energize but my body would not cooperate. I felt terrible and extremely rude, but couldn't help but rest my head on the table and pass out as Jubinal spoke. Lunch was great, but I of course could not enjoy much of it. I ate some rice, quinoa soup, the crust of pizza, and some pasta, which was both good and bad for me I suppose. I did feel quite a bit better or at least more alive after eating but my stomach was still killing me. As we were about to leave the tent, Jubinal reminded me that much of how I felt was in my head ("Todo esta en la cabeza, senorita")...not implying that I wasn't legitimately sick of course (although Efrena did tell me that many tourists apparently pretend to be sick, for god knows what reason), but that my attitude greatly affected how I felt.
Although the next five hours were far from enjoyable, I was trying really hard to stay positive and managed to psyche myself out of my misery, at least enough to enjoy parts of the trail, such as the Inca tunnels
Although today it definitely rained less than yesterday, the weather was far from nice. It stopped raining briefly below the third pass, where we explored a beautiful Inca site and listened to Jubinal talk.
I ran to the bathroom and then crashed once again in my tent as soon as I arrived. My muddy boots were hanging outside the tent and it had started to pour again, but I could not move for a good half hour. It's not like it really mattered, as everything was already soaked and dirty. I finally motivated myself to get up and find my backpack, change, and have a snack. I also took some pictures with our porters. Here is one of Justin and one of his friends
By the time I returned it was dinner time.
After organizing my stuff in anticipation of our 4 am wake up (I will be carrying my pack tomorrow of course), I joined the rest of my group, including our guides and cook, and all the other groups at the nearby bar. Everyone sat around drinking beer and listening to the very strange compilation of 80s music and old pop hits. Justin, the porter, walked me over there but didn't go in. I think the porters were not allowed in, as I later saw him waiting outside for me, which made me feel bad. Justin (the Aussie) and I headed back to our tent around 9:30, although we didn't actually go to bed for an hour or so, singing and just being silly again. It did not rain much for most of the evening and we are all praying that we will be rewarded for all of our suffering with ONE day or at least a morning of sunshine. We are almost finished, and I am really excited to get back to Cusco! Um, I mean, to see Machu Picchu... :)