i's about 5pm right now
but the time on this computer is fuct, date too
and i can't change it: locked.
where am i?
i´m in the sacred valley of the incas
i´m a block away from the Posada we are staying at
in a small anything shop
filled with candy and clearner and soda and meat... and two computers.
everything is in spanish..
which i suppose is good
coz i know that more than Quechua.
i woke this morning at 6am
and before that
and before that...
i didn't get to sleep til past midnight
.. this fucking altitude...
i didn't know it would do this
but i spent most of the night tossing and turning
and woke at 4 to two cocks crowing behind my window...
i don't know.. it wasn't day..
but the moon had lit the sky so much there was an aura around the surrounding mountains before i went to sleep
so i can only imagine what the moon looked like then...
the roosters were confused
i forgive them
but it kinda scared me..
coz i wasn't really having a good dream.
my whole body hurt...
what was it from?
the lack of oxygen?
the massage i gave before heading to bed?
running up and down the inca terraces?
my chest felt like an asthma spasm
heavy, filled, very painful
it hurt to breath
and i wasn't getting enough anyway
i pissed in a bottle
and placed my pillow under my body length wise
to enforce sivasana and open my chest
eventually i found sleep
woke again with the sun, sometime before 6
tried to deny it
but jim was up and clearing his throat and talking and doing things
so i got out of bed
walked into the shower
and poured the piss through my hair
scrubbing the coat of oil and chlorine and minerals and pollution out
then let the hot water pound down on me for...
a long time.
but a cold rinse
and talking with jim in the morning.
i love him more and more each day.
we headed down to breakfast at about 7:40
and i couldn't bring myself to eat
so i made colt's foot, yerba sante and tulsi tea
drinking it through my bombilla
-- the waitress was confused.
eventually i added coco leaves to the tea
and had a bowl of cut bannanas and papaya
and two glasses of papaya juice and one of water (with emergency)
laying on the bed..
off into the bus
into a small town
local market.. not for tourists
just people trying to feed themselves..
a woman with a burst out eye asked me to photograph her so she could get a Sol from me...
i didn´t take any photos of people
but of the bull ring
of the buldings
of the mountains...
there were guiney pigs on sale for food
i was feeling my tourist nausea
i kinda rushed through it
but here's what it it was
bags of potatoes
beans, green and red
grains.. i couldn't tell you what they were
stuffed into canvas bags
like you've seen in those pictures with the indians?
yeah, these indians
and second hand USA clothes
from the 80s
or early 90s
for pretty cheap`
we met the raft captains
both stocky handsome guys
i took their picture
and got on the bus
headed to the river and dropped them off to prepare the rafts
then to the school to hang out with the kids
these were different than the amazon kids..
it was a school day
but the teacher was off at a meeting
so they kids were entertaining themselves..
better than going home to work in the farms
our guide acted as teacher
they sang us a song in quecheua
that i didn't record coz i thought i was going to be the same peruvian anthem the other kids sang us..
this was quite beautiful
and we replied with me leading a three-round, three versed version of "row row row your boat"
merrily merrily merrily merrily...
i did some yoga for the kids out i the basketball courts..
they were all very impressed
then i lifted a kid onto my back and supported him in front of the kids..
the mountains surrounding every side..
i talked to the kids in english a lot
i know they couldn't understand me..
but i had to tell them how good they had it
and i was sorry for other things
and the church...
we left there for the rafting
and i forgot to bring my sandals
so went barefoot
so did deetmar
though they said this section we were doing today only had a class 2 rapid on it
it was mostly just floating..
my stroke was so strong compared to everyone on my side
from my years of canoeing...
elizabeth was in front of me
and instead of watching to stay synched with deetmar
she kept making sure we were following her
which was kinda annoying
but deetmar did his best to watch and match her
our rafting guide tried to teach us some quechua
what's your name?
we paddled around
playing in the water
got splashed a bit
seeing the beautiful mountains float by..
took plenty of pictures
the ride was about 1 hour and 20 minutes
we landed near ollantaytambo
and had a picnic lunch of cold chicken
beets, green beans, broccoli, yuca, sweet potato, mustard celery, gucamole (avacados here are called "palta") and pico de gallo ("de condor" guillermo called it... who made it)
i took lots of pictures of guillermo.
we drank big beers
had our desert of cake and pineapple and banna
and headed to the town of Ollantaytambo
we walked around the town first
not really all that destroyed
and well re-furbished
canals runing through it like friebourg
a little house with the happy fourtune man
kitten and puppy
i took pictures of all this for nayland
the old rock walls
the hillsides with the terraces and the ruins on them...
then we headed up the 200 something stairs to the ... used to be temple
which was pretty amazing.
the huge huge huge blocks they used for the temple had been taken from the top of the mountain... across the valley.
a landslide marked the place
the blocks were taken by the spanish..
this site is special because it is the ONLY place that they defeated the spanish..
but eventually they came back and did their best to destroy it
taking the blocks from the temple on top of the mountain
to build their church in the central square below.
i walked up
noticing that my altitude adjustment must have clicked in
coz i didn't feel all that winded.
deetmar and elizabeth were the only ones able to keep up with me
i went off the trail
above it all
to the top of the mountian
because climbing over the ridge would have been lovely
but would have taken many hours
and.. i only had a half
so i scuttered back down
(only after suffering some sharp cactus needles in my arms and hands)
and around to the other side of the mountain
opening to the energy..
a whole different world...
but you know
every civilization beyond a family
beyond a community
seems based on abuse: slavery, etc..
they could only acheive this greatness by enslaving thousands (or more)
but were those slaves happy to have made this?
happy to have been a part?
... did they think there might have been another option?
known any better?
i walked down the hill
getting back to the bus before judy and pancho
but then leaving again to change more money:
tomorrow we head to Machu Pichu...
we stopped by a bar on the way home
playing a game of Sopa! (frog)
throwing bronze coins into a board filled with holes
centred with a bronze frog...
if you make it into his mouth: 5000 points!
men against women
the men one
but only at the end..
then we had their local corn beer..
no one else really liked it
it reminded me a bit of the khumis from mongolia
that sour fermented taste
and now i have terrible gas.
they sprout the corn kernals first
then dry them
then grind them
then ferment them
only for a few days
filter (feed the solids to the guinea pigs)
and drink and drink!
the flag of red and/blue plastic outside of a place says that they make it..
and it can be a bar
or a house
anyone who makes it
can advertise others to come drink with them.
then we headed back here to the posada
and i came directly here
figuring out how to move my files into the public directory
so you can view SOME of the photos from the amazon trip at
but it's just a directory structure and all the files are over a Meg
so only do it if you have a fast connection.
it's slow here
so i'm not going to bother trying to upload anymore right now
back in cuzco?
back in USA?
now i´m going to go back through and try and catch up on my back-dating my hand written entries
í've only got an hour..
then back to the hotel
then off to a private family's house to eat dinner with them
----(added after dinner)----
i'm very tired
and i don't know if it's more that
or the altitude (did i mention i'm at 9,500 feet?)
or that i ate two servings of the guacamole today
but i wasn't able to eat much.
i almost didn't bring the camera
because i figured i had taken enough pictures today
a little burnt out on the tourist picture thing..
but jim asked me to bring it
so i did
and... got some.
dinner was nice
lamb and potato salad (there are over 300 types of potatoes down here, these were thick and stringy), rice with pasta, stuffed pepper, squash soup (with added spicey Pico De Condor made by Guillermo... imagine a cross between Shrek and Bob Hoskins and make it Peruvian...)
a purple corn drink
with lemon, clove and cinnimon
tasted almost like coca-cola...
a little bit of conversation
but i was really tired
didn't finish all i ate
came back to the hotel
--- didn't go in
stayed out here to write a bit
had to walk around a while waiting for one of the computers to be open
got some time
i'll see what all i can get typed in tonight...
we take a train at 9am for machu pichu for two days...
probably won't be able to post from there
but these should be enough to read
if you have the time.