Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Day 2, on the Way to Colca Canyon, con't

The Kuntur Wassi, meaning "home of the condor" in Quecha, looked promisingly cheerful, though the fact that no one spoke Ingles' and that we were the only guests was a bit strange. I was grateful that our driver and our English speaking guide were also staying in the hotel.

The street in front of the hotel was very steep and narrow. It was shared by little boys, old women, and herds of sheep and llamas. The surface was slippery with excrement, so we did not attempt any walks.

The hotel in itself, built into the hillside, was endless stairs! It's funny how such an ordinary thing can be so annoying in a high altitude setting with a hurting knee. I tried not to whine, but definitely was aware that my nose was quite out of joint.
Detail from the hotel's restaurant's oven...which sure could have used a fire in it, but we were the only guests!

On the left you see the door to our room. Everything was bathed in the golden warmth of the sun. The patio was full of flowers. All was well.....until the sun went down. It's one thing to say "It gets cold at night." and an entirely different thing to actually experience the cold of the Andes! And, they don't heat their rooms!

Doreen and I wondered whether we could stand another day without baths, but then it was decided for us, when all the water leaked onto the bathroom floor and we used one of the two towels we had been given to mop up the water. The office was three stories up, and neither of us felt like braving the cold to go get help. What, a phone in our room? Of course not. Neither did anyone speak Ingles'.

Doreen thought there must be some kind of message in our "water problem". I stubbornly refused to accept it as a problem. To me, it was of no significance at all. If anything was a problem, I thought, it was being so damn cold, so damn high, so steep, and having a hurting knee! How could it be possible that only two full days in Peru had passed.....and here we were in the middle of nowhere?

Everywhere in Peru, dogs lie in the middle of the street if it pleases them while patient drivers navigate around them, and children clamor to have their picture taken so they can proudly run home with a few cents.

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