Tuesday, March 9, 2010

You threw off my groove! Cuzco

I decided to head to Cuzco to see if there was any slight chance I'd be able to get to see Machu Picchu. Since the recent flooding and mud slides around Cuzco took out a large chunk of the train tracks and hiking trails leading to La Citadella, as it is sometimes called, there was no way to get into the ruins so I decided instead to go to Lake Titicaca. At 3,800 meters, it's the largest, highest navegable lake in the world!

I got a flight from Lima to Cuzco at 5:30am on Wendesday morning. Susan and I stayed up most of the night talking so I didn't really sleep before Javier picked me up to take me to the airport. I got into Cuzco and took a taxi to a hostel my friend Nikki had recommended. It was huge and the staff were great but I didn't have a bed reserved so I had to wait for my nap until the afternoon. I wandered the city a bit and got in contact with a friend of a friend who has a hotel in Cuzco. I went there and met him and Bilma, a woman who works there. I decided to stay there the next night and asked her if she knew of any good salsa places around. She told me where to go then I asked if she wanted to come and she said "Si" so we decided to meet and go dancing that night.

We started at the touristy salsa place and I had a few good dances although I was really rusty from not dancing salsa at all for about a year. Then when they stopped playing salsa she said we could go dance at a club that was really Cuzco, not a tourist place. Since I would be turning 23 at midnight I said "Ok!" and we walked over to Club Las Vegas where I quickly realized everyone was staring at the only blonde in the room...me. Well, Bilma took really good care of me and we boogied and a few guys asked her if I wanted to dance since they thought I couldn't speak Spanish, which made it easy to say no.

Dancing and several severely inebriated Englishmen sharing my dorm room made for very little sleep and the next morning I had decided to go for a tour of the Sacred Valley, which was really fun but I was exhausted and kept falling asleep on the bus. We saw a few Incan ruins and how the women clean, spin and dye the alpaca wool by hand, then of course got to buy their goods.

I had decided since Machu Picchu was out I wanted to go to see another marvel of the area: Lake Titicaca. So the next day I set out to tour the lake and see the people living on the islands there.

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