From Lima to Cusco

I must say that that phrase had never entered my 66 year old brain as the title of a blog post detailing my/our experiences. There aren’t too many stories – just some sightseeing, so here are some of those sights.

Remember the Incan Ruin – real name Huaca Pucllana – I told you we blew by? Well the reason is that to enter you must go on a one hour guided tour and that wasn’t in the cards for our city tour. Being the fearless travellers we are though we found it ourselves the next day.

Huaca Pucllana is one of several archeological sites discovered around Lima. The site dates from 100 A.D. and was the home to various cultures through to about 650 A.D. when it was covered up and abandoned, according to the guide. The idea of being covered up is quite amazing since it is over 500 metres in length, 100 metres in width and 22 metres in height. It was discovered after people started building their homes on the site and when motocross was taking place on it.

The purpose was to ensure that the elite clergy could demonstrate their control over all water resources, both fresh and salt water in the area.

There are literally millions of these adobe bricks in the site.

The bricks were all placed vertically in order to give them room to move in case of an eartquake. Brilliant. The bricks were made with dirt and water from the local river. They were safe from destruction by the rain since it never rains in Lima (according to our guide). And I suppose he is mostly right since they only get 6.4mm or 1/3 of an inch annually. eat your heart out Algarve.

This is a reconstruction of a burial plot. They were wrapped, given food for the journey and covered over.

That’s a lot of work to build and then cover over.

They also had llamas as beasts of burden and guinea pigs for food. Today it is a VERY popular, if expensive dinner option. This caused much consternation among us. Lynne had many as pets as a wee child and the thought of eating one was disturbing. On the other hand, many many people said we must try it. Eventually I did and was underwhelmed at best. There was almost no meat – I gave Terry a square about 1 x 1 and that was the largest piece I found on the thing.

After the tour we were ready for lunch. You know how in most major cities there are no shortage of cafes, bistros, whatever on a Main Street such as, oh say, Robson Street? Well we found the exception that proves the rule. It was a long walk before we found a reasonable looking place.

This may look appetizing but I’m here to tell you that that isn’t always the case. I’ll never go on looks again! This bread was enough to permanently remove white bread from my diet!

Off to Cusco we go. You gotta love those early morning pick-ups – 5:00 for the thirty minute drive to the airport to catch an 8:00 domestic flight. “Oh there could be very long lines.” Not so much. The only long lines were at the only two places to get coffee.

The Cusco airport is at the east end of the valley. The landing path is from the west end. However, there isn’t a lot of room to get that sucker cranked over and lined up.

It may not look like much but I’m guessing we were at a 33 to 35 degree angle which from my perspective was about 30 degrees too much.

Finally on an almost level flight path. Runway top right.

After being picked up (Yes yes, as opposed to before being picked up) we were off to our hotel. Now those of you who have read these things carefully will recall that when we were waiting to be checked in at the hotel in Lima we all enjoyed the famous Pisco Sour. Not in Cusco. We had our choice of coca tea, which aids in combatting altitude sickness or muni tea which combats upset stomach. We all have altitude pills – Cusco is 3399 metres or 11,151 feet above sea level and it is recommended not to have the coca tea when taking the pills, we all enjoyed the muni tea. Probably a better choice anyway.

For dinner I chose the Limbus Restaurant – highly highly recommended by Tripadvisor. We climbed and climbed and climbed. A sample of the stairs.

The other three were real troopers and didn’t complain once – at least that I heard. When we got there we discovered the music was loud techno music and the menu pretty much pub food. So much for Tripadvisor. We were one drink and back on our way down.

However, the view – aahhh the view. From the east to the west.

Pictures – particularly the ones above don’t do it justice.

Then there is this one.

Time to say Buenos Noches.

The Shoe Blog

Now I warned you that Peruvian women, although lovely, aren’t “out there” in shoe fashion. It was the best I could do.

Next a parade like no other, ruins like no other and factory sales like no other.

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