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Chivay, Espinar, Raqchi and now Cusco


Ok so we have been traveling around now for the last few days to places where I did not have internet acess so I am going to try and recap as best as I can.
Last place I left off at was Arequipa. From there we traveled to Chivay where we went as high as 4,600 meters! Do the math for feet. This is twice the altitude of Machu Pichu! Thom and I were feeling altitude sickness. Headaches at the back of your neck, light headed and even a little dizzy. I think I had it worst then everyone. Along the way we stopped at this smally place to buy Coca leaves and drink Coca Tea which is made from the leaves and hot water. The tea was quite nice kinda reminded me of green tea. Chewing on the leaves..eh... you need to add this pellet thing to them to make it work well and that tastes nasty. So Atilla gave us a "How to chew Coca Leaves" lesson on the bus. What it does is it makes your mouth and throat a little numb so that you relax and actually take in more oxygen. Sure why not....
At Chivay we met up with another Itrepid/Dragonman group that was basicly doing the same trip we were but from the opposite direction La Paz- Lima. It was nice to meet some new people and we all joined together to go to the Hot Springs that night. Very nice, it did not smell strongly of sulfer like some hot springs can. That night we went to a pretty bad resturant where we all waited for hours to get the wrong food that we ordered. Ha! I think it was because there was a big festival going on outside that night. I was too cold and sick from the altitude to really enjoy that festival but I think Thom got some video.
The next moring we awoke around 5:30 so that we could leave and get a good spot at Colca Canyon. The Canyon is one of the biggest in the world, 3x the size of our Grand Canyon. We wanted to get a good spot because when the sun hits just right in the morning the Condors circle up out of the Canyon and right over your head. They are huge birds!!! After taking 50 photos where probably only one or two are decent...LOL.... we drove to Espinar.
Espinar was really only a stop over to make our journey to Raquchi shorter.
At Raqchi we did our home stays!!! It was really nice. This town is known for making pottery from the clay and volcanic elements in the surrounding area. The men make it and women paint and cell it. Thom, Megan and I were sent to one family home while the other three were sent to another. After eating diner with Gido and Carmen (Two children who lived there) they dressed us up in traditional clothing where we had a ceromony and danced around the fire while the women sang and a man played a guitar with 18 strings. They were so kind.
Today we woke at our homestay and went to see a demonstration on how they make the pottery. Thom got to make one as well. Then after many hugs and goodbyes we drove to Cusco.
We are here for today and have a meeting tomorrow morning about our treck up the Inca Trail which we will be starting on the 20th. I am a bit nervous since even thought the altitude sickness had gone away and should not be as bad since the elevation is not as high as where we were, it still knocks the wind out of you just to walk up a flight of steps or bend over to tie your shoes. Ehhhhhhhhhh we'll be fine and if not there is always the emergency donkey to take us back down.....
Seriosly I am more worried about being cold at night then anything so I am going into Cusco to buy some long Johns I think today. The trek will take us 4 days to reach the top and then we will be back in Cusco for a whole other free day before we start the final leg of our Journey to La Paz. I will be putting up pictures here today or tomorrow as well since they have a decent computer system here.
Love and Miss you guys!

Posted by Kelly Rose 11:58 Archived in Peru Tagged events

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You are going to do great! What an amazing experience. miss you guys! Erin

by Erin

Glad your feeling better,since it's not as high I'm sure the worst is behind you. This journey is packed with amazing moments for both of you. Take care and buy the long johns...Hugs & Kisses

by Mom

i a really enjoying reading about your journey.It sounds so interesting. The club sounded awesome-i think latin dancing lessons may be in order at the Shade. Enjoy the rest of your trip. Miss you both. Love, Mary Pat

by mary pat

Wow! Sounds really adventurous! Glad I'm old and would stay at the resort you spoke of earlier. By the way, now you know what it is like to have asthma. It is a very uncomfortable feeling. I'm sure you will adjust...relax, that helps...Have fun and I look forward to MORE from you.
Aunt Lori

by Lori Marino

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