The Peruvian Andes are amazing! Merry Christmas!

Trip Start Sep 03, 2011
Trip End Jun 04, 2012

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Sacred Dimension

Flag of Peru  ,
Saturday, December 24, 2011

It was another early start to take the ordered 6am taxis so we could arrive at the airport in plenty in time to make our 9.30am flight. It now seems after my diversion back to Salt Lake City when we go to check in for our flights my name seems to be difficult to find making an easy check-in not so easy!  We cruised through passport control and our take off was pretty much routine, although we did spot a celebrity while we were waiting, David Caruso from CSI Miami, why couldn't it have been someone interesting like anyone else?

Lima was warm and humid. We had a 4 hour wait for our bus to take us to Cusco. It is always hard trying to get the timing right when booking connecting transport you don't want to not leave enough time. But we survived that, but the 22 hour ride to Cusco was something else. We departed at 5.30pm with interesting views of Lima before it got dark - developing hillside homes, mountains, sand dunes and a sand storm. Andrew and Samuel were at the front of the double story bus, Campbell and I were behind them then Hannah swapped seats with someone so a couple could sit together. We looked forward to a sleep on our reclining bus seats, only to find people behind us making it difficult to recline and banging on seats and altitude and motion sickness playing havoc with our stomachs and heads. The views through the misty Andes, the hills, the valleys, the terraced  hills, waterfalls and rivers were spectacular but I felt awful!!!!!! We passed plenty of little villages, bridges and Peruvians working and walking along the roadsides and the roads were pretty good if not a little narrow in part but I think with the amount of tourists they get through the roads and bridges have been substantially upgraded.

We finally arrived into Cusco about 2pm Tuesday and then picked up by one of our accomodation owners, Dilmar. Our accommodation was another 49 minute drive away and Dilmar kindly loaded the 5 of us and all our luggage into their 5 seater 4WD. I was nauseous and felt blah but once we got up to where we were staying it was worth it. I still feel off but feeling a little bit better. We literally are up in the hills in a valley. The valley looks down into the town of Qoya. Up the mountains in one direction you have mountain lagoons. Up the other side we have crops that the farmers have planted. We are just surrounded by these hills and mountains that can only place you high in the Andes mountain range.
Allysun, Dilmar's wife had dinner ready for us and then took us up the hill for a short walk where we found a spot to sit and talk and look at the stars, uninterrupted by man made light.

It really is idyllic up here, granted it has been raining intermittently but it is pleasant enough. Andrew and I did a walk into Qoya yesterday which we managed but it wiped me out for the rest of the day. Hannah worked on our nativity scene. In Chile we bought some Das/air drying clay and paint so we could make our own little piece of Christmas, but the girl is pretty clever and it is coming together. Our Christmas this year is going to be pretty simple, but welcomed. 

Thursday, Andrew and the kids went for a walk after breakfast up the hills and along the creek then Hannah and Campbell went into Pisaq (pronounced Peesak) to drop off Elvis (their helper) and have a look at the art and craft market. Later on for dinner we went up the hill to a little trout farm and caught 2.5 kg of fresh trout for our dinner. The climb up just about killed me but the fish was great and Hannah and I helped to scale and gut.

Friday Andrew and I went into Pisaq with Allysun to the art and craft market to grab the family Christmas presents. The market goods were amazing and we returned with some authentic Peruvian gifts.

Today is Christmas eve and with Allysun we made a vegetarian Christmas Eve lunch for us to share. Local mountain mushrooms, potatoes with wild turnip leaves, salad with greens from Allysun's garden and a beautiful pumpkin and garden vege mash with garden herbs. It was beautiful! 

Tomorrow we are going to go into Calca to go the food market to get our Christmas dinner supplies and go to church. We have still yet to finish our Christmas decorations and get a brush to paint our nativity scene.

It is just so serene and calm here and as much as I miss you all  we are really enjoying the prospect of this simple Christmas and not missing the hustle and bustle of the modern and commercial Christmas.

I need to finish this so I can post this.

Merry Christmas everyone! Love to you all!

Tina, Andrew, Hannah, Campbell and Samuel
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Shannon on

Just came home after a Christmas Day in Horseshoe Bay.....Lots of prawns ham and turkey and gorgeous raspberry pavlova.. Tyron, Isaac, Bronte, and me with a bunch of other Maggie types. Hope you have a wonderfully simple spiritual day high in the Andes. We love you and are thinking of you all. Merry Christmas xx

Jacqui T on

Ahh, your Christmas sounds amazing. Your right about the hustle and bustle. Every year Jeff and I say we want it to be different. Once I had prepared the food I felt so sick that I didn't enjoy any of it and I have to ask WHY, WHAT FOR. Your Christmas sounds perfect, apart from the motion, altitude sickness getting there. Ho Hum. Love and miss you all.

Shannon on

I love you photos! And dinner did not look at all toxic :) The house you have rented looks awesome too- Big kiss from Sri Lanka xx

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