The famous ice mummy Inca girl, Juanita.

Trip Start Dec 29, 2007
Trip End Dec 22, 2008

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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Day 8 - An insight into the reality of life within Peru and a visit to see an ice mummy!!
Today was to be a reality tour too see an insight into the hardships that Peruvians have to suffer but for me I just didn't have the energy and feeling bust left Ads to go on his own. Mum also had taken a turn for the worse so a doctor was called who filled her with many antibiotics and lotions and potions to get her better! Over to Ads, the Reality Tour!...... B LURB TO COME!
That afternoon we were keen to see the famous frozen ice mummy called 'Juanita,' an inca girl who was just 12 when she was sacrificed on the top of Mount Ampato to the gods and her frozen mummified and amazingly preserved body was then discovered along with other child sacrifices by an American archaeologist who had been researching about this for 18 years before the final discovery. It was interesting to learn how this girl would have climbed and hiked over 580km to the top of this mountain knowing of her impending death but also excepting that she had been chosen for her purity to be given to the gods. At first they were unsure as to how she would have been sacrificed, but after flying the mummy to America a bone density machine revealed that she died quite brutally with a blow to her right temple. It was all so fascinating and still this mummy is being used for scientists to enable them to learn more about her perfect preservation and the life of the Inca's, a period which lasted so short a time compared to most. On seeing the many artefacts, pots and crafts buried with her we then saw 'Juanita' herself, she was so much smaller than we anticipated and whilst it was all quite weird it was amazing also to see after 500 years how preserved her body and organs were, so incredible! To get over the experience coffee and chocolate cake after was definitely needed!
We then explored some more of the city, Arequipa is a beautiful place, the white colonial stone buildings, the back drop of the volcanos and snow capped mountains all around makes the setting just fantastic. We went inside the cathedral which unfortunately had been affected quite badly by earthquake 9 years ago and inside was fairly freshly painted and modern as a result. We then saw a priest giving mass in the beautifully designed 1698 La Compania, then after packing for our dreaded flight tomorrow, it was dinner in a cheap eat (large pizza for four pounds!) then off to bed ready to wake up at 4am....
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