Saturday, May 24, 2008
Day 6, Ollantaytambo
On the way out of Cusco we saw the site Sacsayhuaman (jokingly pronounced "sexy woman") in the distance. Even though the stones are laid in jagged lines, they look like straight lines from the air.
This is the beautiful Sacred Valley, the breadbasket of Peru. Here farmers farm the way they always have, praying to the sun, and the mountains, rotating their crops, and leaving their fields to lie fallow every fourth year.
We had an hour and 15 minutes at the Pisac Market. Since we had a private driver, I figured it was our decision how long we wanted to spend, but I deferred to Doreen who did not want to make a fuss. I wasn't very happy about this, as the cost of the excursion was too high for the return. I did learn that I am rather stubborn about wanting value for my money.
At the market I bought a bag of maca nuts, a bag of coca leaves, and a cheap acrylic shawl which I should have left there. I don't make good quick decisions.
scrawny feet for dinner, anyone?
This is the Pakaritampu where we had also stayed last year. This time, there were even more flowers. We didn't see the llamas being used as lawnmowers, though!
Taking a bath became laughable, as the power went out and there was no hot water. Still, we were the only folks in town with lights, as the hotel has a generator.
This romantically beautiful setting clutched at my heart just as it had last year, bringing me to tears. Sometimes, it's just about an Eden-like beauty which I am privileged to witness; other times it's about missing a soul-mate. Yet other times, it's a spiritual thing. I cry often in Peru.
Even the music....so beautiful.....makes me cry.
Kittens played under foot at the restaurant where we had lunch. I shared my lunch with their hungry mom, but was unable to make Doreen feel guilty enough to part with hers. It was a very small sandwich.
No, we did not go into the Quetchua Blues Bar Cafe! In fact, we did not dare have one single drink the entire trip, taking the warnings about alcohol at high altitude warnings seriously.
I could have sat a long, long time at the Ollantaytambo square! The indigenous people appeared oblivious to us....and except for one very old toothless woman begging for money....we were left alone. We noticed later that she had been well supplied with food which people shared with her.
The sun was going down and it was quickly getting cold, though for a while the stone benches we sat on at the square remained warm.
Tomorrow would be an early day for us! We had to be at the train station at 7:20 to take the Vistadome to Aguas Calientes.