3,400M (11,154.855643044618) Ft Above Sea Level
Trip Start Sep 08, 2012
27Trip End Nov 27, 2012
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I'm not sure if I'm experiencing mild altitude sickness (soroche) or 'digestively adjusting' to this city. I am feeling pretty good for the most part- with the mornings being the worst- and I am refusing to take Diamox until the trek. Again a small price to pay... Actually, not feeling 100% has allowed me rest, reflect and write this post.
Cusco is a Unesco World Heritage Site and and was the center of the Inka Empire. For context it is about as high as Mt. Hood. In the last few days we went on a city tour which included: the Cathedral of Santo Domingo, the Temple of the Sun, and the Plaza de Armas. We also visited the famous ruins of Sacsayhuman (sounds a lot like 'sexywoman'), Tambomachay, Pukapukara, and Chinchero. All of which were great! There are so many ruins that it's honestly hard to keep track of
Common theme of ruins sites:
*precise stone work: polished stones are perfectly aligned with one another
*all face east
*all have a purpose, nothing in the construction was unintentional - talk about efficient!
We also had the opportunity to meet local artists and weavers. We visited Pablo Seminario's studio in Urubamba and a long-time family run weaving business in Chinchero (see photos).
Yesterday was a very special day as we got to spend the entire day with Pablo. Pablo is an Inkan shaman from the mountains. Pablo performed an ancient cleansing ceremony for us in the afternoon. Once again I am at a loss for how to put this experience into words but I did post a few pictures here. I ended up riding in the back of our van with him most of the day and amazingly enough, we managed to communicate in Spanish. He speaks mostly Quechua and I mostly American from America (it turns out I know a lot more Espanol than I thought; it certainly helps to know a Spanish teacher!)
'They' say that music is the universal language but I think there may be a place for laughter too. It was wonderful to be in the presence of such a kind, generous, and overall amazing human being. It was inspiring to say the least. With that I'll close on the top 3 things I'm grateful for today:
1. Freedom of choice
2. Hot: chocolate/showers
3. Anti-poop medicine
What are yours?
OK off to explore! Thanks for reading!