Highlights: Eating guinea pig, shopping at the market, hanging out with the local kids, and an Inca style massage
Pictures taken: 109
Travel: Walking around Agua Calientes, four hour train ride back to Cusco
Favorite photo of the day:
I woke fairly early and read through my materials about Machu Picchu. I decided that i id a good job covering most of the site so wouldn’t fork out the money for a second trip up. Instead i decided to explore the town a little more.
I walked down the main street of the tourist district and then went into the market. After walking through a few times i decided to buy a bag of green beans and another bag of some other sort of bean – but also green. I paid 2 soles for the green beans and 1 sole for the bag of strange beans. I then went and sat in the sun and ate my vegetables and watched as other tourists boarded the bus to Machu Picchu, locals went about their business and even other tourist like me just taking in the sun and the sights.
Then i walked around the residential side of the river that cuts through the town.
I had a lunch of guinea pig with rice, potatoes and beans. It was a fairly expensive meal – 45 soles just for the food. But the guinea pig(s) tasted good and it was a nice day to eat, drink, and enjoy the people.
I decided to have an Inca style massage done. That ended up costing me 90 soles and i wish i was awake for more of it so i could say how it might be similar or different from Khmer style massage (like i had in Cambodia). It wasn’t a very deep tissue style since i fell asleep.
Before getting on the train i took advantage of a happy hour special and had a few mojitos and french fries. While eating a kid arrived at a door next to the restaurant that had been closed by the breeze. He was locked out. There was a narrow window above the door though and there wasn’t any glass in it. He grabbed a piece of metal curtain rod from across the street and then i helped him stand on the door and put his arms through the opening above the door. He eventually was able to unlock the door from the inside.
The street scene were i was ending the afternoon was entertaining. You have small children playing with the water running down the open drain in the middle of the road, cats, dogs, and chickens taking turns prowling the road, scores of tourists marching up and down the hill…
I boarded the train and took my seat. Across from me were two Japanese travelers that had just met. Next to me a Brazilian. What common language did we speak while in a Spanish speaking country? English. Their fluency (Leon’s) and effort (Yoshi – his friend didn’t say more than hi to me before tuning into his own soundtrack) helped convince me to work on my language skills. After all, i spent 3 months in Brazil and took a year of Japanese. I should have been able to communicate the basics with both of them – and not just in English. Yoshi is on the first few months of a round the world excursion.
The four hours went by fairly quickly with them to talk to.
After arrival in Cusco i stopped at a church where they were setting up for a fiesta of some sort. A few fireworks were set off and they were assembling bamboo frameworks for something.
I took the lodging advice of my friends from the previous day and stomped around just uphill form the central plaza until i found Hotel Midori. The place was very nice – priced a little high at $70 but after the cramped afternoon i wanted a nice place to stretch out, shower up, and write some blog updates.