I don´t recall where my last entry left off ...
Trip Start Jan 24, 2000
5Trip End Feb 15, 2000
The first night in Puno was rather non-eventful. We were very exhausted from the previous evening and ended up going to bed rather early. The next day we took a boat trip from Puno to the floating Islands of Uros an dto Taquile island.
Uros was relatively interesting
They did have a museum on the island we stopped on, but all it had was a bunch of dead birds that I donīt think were even stuffed. It didnīt smell too good in there -- not a museum in my book, more like a morgue for dead birds. I laughed pretty hard when I saw this, but laughed even harder when I saw the TIP jar on your way out.
From Puno, Uros was only 30 minutes, but Taquile was 4 hours. And it was a long 4 hours. The boats that take you on the tours go EXTREMELY slow. If you had any kind of decent boat, you could have seen everything we did in 3 hours
When we arrived at Taquile, we were very excited to see that we had to climb a massive staircase to get to the village. The island is at a very high altitude (about 3 miles up) and the air was very thin. Hiking up the stairs took a good 25 minutes -- I am not accustomed to the thin air and my lungs were burning as I got to the top. The village was pretty small but the scenery was spectacular. Other than the views, there was not much to see.
The most interesting part of the day was the ride back from Taquile. We sat in the cabin of the boat next to 4 drunk Peruvians that were taking turns having shots of some sort of booze the entire trip. One of them was especially sociable and tried to talk to Kevin and myself. We understood about 2% of what he was saying. I think he got tired of trying to talk to us so he just started singing. Real loud. Then one of his other friends started to join in. Then the 3rd friend would stand up and dance. We figured it was just a matter of time before the whole lot of them threw up -- probably on us. Fortunately it didnīt happen (although one of the guys passed out on Kevinīs shoulder a couple of times). After we arrived back at the port, three of them decided that we had become such good friends that they wanted to give us a big bearhug. I have never smelt anything worse or felt more disguisted in my life.
We left this morning relatively early for La Paz, Bolivia. We were fortunate that our bus was running on time because there have been several protests in Peru and the protestors have been blocking the road to La PAz for a few days
We are still trying to get to the Amazon basin -- we may be able to fly out tomorrow at 9am. If the plane is full or if it is unable to takeoff due to rain in the Amazon, we will board a bus at 11:30am for a 19 hour busride. Painful but the only way we can get there. I pray the plane is flying -- I absolutely do not want to ride in a bus for 19 hours on an unpaved road.
Hopefully my next entry will be after we have been to the Amazon and are in Cuzco waiting to hike the Inca Trail.