On Sunday morning we are scheduled to meet our guide and the other members of our group in the hotel lobby so we can call fly out of Lima and head for Cuzco. As soon as we reach the lobby a guy in a navy track suit wearing a pair of navy crocs asks if we are with Southern Explorations (the fabulous tour company we traveled with). We say yes and everyone exchanges names and heads out for the van where we wait for D & K. They are late. They finally show up and we learn that their luggage was lost en route and they have not much more than the clothes on their backs. How fun. Fortunately they had travel insurance (don’t leave home without it!) so ultimately they were fine.
We fly out of Lima after learning that you don’t get to leave Lima without paying a tax. They have a sort of exit tax/usage fee for leaving the city. I think it’s kind of brilliant. The flight is uneventful and short and we are soon in a completely different city.
Cuzco is at about 11,000 feet so it is important to take it easy when you first arrive. Our hotel was on the main square and we were thrilled to find that there was a parade going on. The occasion was a celebration of the Rosary Virgin. I was so happy to have a 1G chip in my digital because there were so many great shots! (click on the thumbnail to see a bigger image)
That is but a few. I’ll open up the whole album
if I ever when I get through these travels.
We watched the parade for a long time then went exploring and discovered that you can’t swing a dead cat in Cuzco without someone trying to sell you something. Stuff to buy abounds. People walk along the street selling artwork (Senora – I painted this myself), all of which looks alike. Kids sell postcards. Little girls in native dress carry around baby alpacas and let you take their picture for a sole (about 35 cents).
That evening we look in the Lonely Planet guide for somewhere to eat and discover The Fallen Angel which is a very cool restaurant. You have to knock to get in the door and when you do you find that they have created tables using claw foot tubs filled with rocks and water and goldfish and covered with heavy glass. There are bed like couches covered in pillows for seating. Out in the courtyard is a spectacular sculpture of a fallen angel. The food was fabulous. I had pumpkin ravioli that was to die for.
We really wanted to wander the city and trip the light fantastic but alas we were acclimating to altitude and needed our beauty sleep. It was a blessedly quiet and car alarm free night.