Friday, June 21, 2013

Traveling to Puno

We left the hotel in Cusco early this morning and made our way through rush hour traffic! 
Along the highway we saw many stray dogs just waiting there for food, so I was throwing them bread along the way!
We stopped at a neat little place for a restroom break, where we saw alpaca and llama and Guinness pigs 
From there we traveled many more miles before stopping for a 14 mile bike ride!
We were sad when it ended!
We had our lunch and back in the van headed for Puno. We arrived safely at 5pm! Long day!

Amantany island

We dropped our packs at our local family's house, all the houses are made of adobe brick!  Two or three people per family .
Sue and me and Yohn stayed at the home of Oscar and Dena and their two children, Delinda and Stephanie.
Oscar led the way up the highest peak on the mountain, Pache Tata at 12,500 ft
It was a full day! Oscar left us to climb at the foot of the peak then returned for us at dark . We watched the sun set from the top and had dinner with our family, took a 30 min nap when awakened by Oscar to get us dressed for the disco! We dressed in the family's native clothes and again headed up this hill to the local dance! They even played la bamba ! We all did the local dance and had a wonderful time!
We slept in a small room with many heavy blankets as it was very cold here!
Again we awoke to Oscar at 615 with breakfast then headed out for our kayak trip! 
Tonight was our last time together as a group we enjoyed eating the local dish of guinea pig and we all expressed our appreciation to Yohn and each other for making this a trip of a lifetime!

Tequila island

This was our 2nd island. We stopped here for lunch.
Climbed a nice hill where they carry everything up this hill on their backs!
A man was carrying about 4cases of beer on his back!

Uros islands

This may sound unbelievable to you as it did to me but these people live on floating islands made of lake reeds!!
Here they are showing us how they build their islands! Starting with a base of peat then tying it together, putting cut reed on top layer crisscrossing it!  It really floats ! We jumped on it and you can feel it move! For the last part they stake it down so it won't float away! And if they have a bad neighbor or they get mad at their neighbor they just pull up stake and move! If their family has a rebellious child they cut his house or section of the island off and send him floating away!

Monday, June 17, 2013

The amazon basin

We took a 3 hour boat ride to our camp  "Refugio Amazon"
Along the way saw much wild life.
Some big rodent that looked like a big guinea pig the capy bera,
 Something like that and many gators! Camine ! Excuse me!
We then took a nite hike and boat ride saw many more canine and a  tranzala !
We even saw Night Monkeys!
Then today we saw a host of birds, from Tucans to macaws ! And the weaver bird makes his nest like a coconut! See picture .. I have recorded just a touch of the sounds of the jungle!  Not quite yet! Sorry!
Our guide was a tree climber!
Later we took a hike and canoe ride to try to find the Anacona!!!!! No luck!!!
We visited a local farm and learned that they grow kudzu as a way to replenish the soil ! Go figure!!!!!

Then at the farm we came across a
Achiote tree and they use it for dye and our guide painted me!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Free day in Cusco!

I Woke this morning feeling like a knew person!!! Just wanted to dance!!
We all slept late and then hit the plasa.
There was a festival going on.
 We visited a local cathedral where a painting of the last supper had a chinchilla on the plate instead of a lamb! Our guide told us it was a guinea pig ! We will have to inform him!
From there we went to another market had lunch just walked around and enjoyed a beautiful day!
I considered it all joy when I encountered 
My sickness trials!!! It makes me appreciate my health even more!
James 12-3

Lares Inca Trail continues to Machu Picchu !

We had a short walk out the next day and I seem to be doing fine!
Yohn Took us to a  cheche bar and showed us the process of making their corn liquor!
He showed us many things about the countryside like this little worm that grows on the cactus that they use to make paint! 
We also ate the cactus fruit!
After this we went to the hotel in the little town that we were in and went out to dinner! 
Somewhere in the middle the night again I became sick! The stomach ailment didn't seem so bad the first part of the day and I continued as normal!
Today was Machu Picchu !
We had to take a train into the town and then a bus up to the site.
We hiked all the way up to the Sungate which was quite a distance up!
Then back down to meet our guide to take us through the ruins! 
By this time I am not feeling well at all!
The whole Machu Picchu  guide trip I was miserable! The whole bus ride back and the train ride back I felt  like I was dying!
When I returned to the hotel I took my Cipro which I had forgotten and wala! I am almost back to myself!!! 
What a trip!!!!

The sun gate

The Lares Inca trail

So much to say about the Lares Inca trail. 
First I thought I was doing the Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu but we did the Lares Inca Trail .
We started in the rain just a drizzle up the mountain. We had bought little toys and stuff for the children along the trail, there were maybe two schools I think along the trail. We gave them out and spent some time with the children. They were so excited to receive the little toys!  We continued uphill. This trail reminded me of the Wonderland Trail up up up !
The first night we camped around 13,000 and When I lay down, my head began to  ache and realized that I had altitudes sickness, my guide gave me oxygen and told me to stay in the tent and keep warm! I did so !
Somewhere in the early night I began to throw out and out and out as Yohn says, By morning I was very weak with very little sleep Yohn says to me you will be riding a horse today! They put me on a horse and up an up we went! 
There were times when the mountain was too steep for the horse and I had to get off the walk. Our guide Wilham  would take my arm and help me up the mountain  as I could hardly breathe and was so weak! I thank my God for him!
We continued on the trail again up and up and up and again on the steep parts I would have to walk! We went over the Hualcajasa pass at 15000 feet!!! Faithful  Willham would always be there!
We were almost to the the lunch site and we had to go down the Steephill I had to get off and walk again The Porter who was leading the horse went first and was grazing the horse while waiting for me.
When he saw I was almost there he went to get the horse and the horse took off for the campsite! We were still a good mile or more away. So altitude sickness and all I drug myself into the site and lay down while the others enjoyed the wonderful lunch provided!
After a good rest at lunch I walked the rest of the way to the campsite seemed like 100 miles but Wilhelm was there and my tent mate, nurse, just all around friend Sue , and we made it, of course the last into the camp almost at dark!!! 
But we made it!
I am immediately lay down and slept for two hours and woke with a healthy appetite, ate and the next day I was back to myself!!
(Pictures to come later as they are on my camera)

Monday, June 10, 2013

Sacred Valley

We started out early this morning on bicycles and road all the way down to the sacred Valley to Piesca two hours!

From here we began to hike,we walked through the little town up the steps along the Inca trail by all the terraces that the Incas built for agricultural purposes!

Above is the irrigation system that the Incas built and is still in use to this day!

After the long hike we had a picnic lunch waiting for us under the tarp!

Sunday, June 9, 2013


Today was our trial
hike to see how we did with the steps and the altitude. We all passed the test!

Yohn our guide.. Said the easy way to remember The name was "sexy woman"
Do you see it ? Saqsaywaman?

This was the fortress of the Inkas, we learned today about the Puma, here you see the teeth of the Puma.

Supposedly The Incas built their walls and trails in the shape of the Puma!
Part of the river being the tail.

This is Sue with me!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Arrival in Cusco

I have arrived in Cuzco and gotten the much needed rest after being awake most of the night in Lima! 
I am adjusting to the high altitude of 11,600 something feet am doing okay a little lightheaded and very short-winded !
Visited the Plaza on the Square today!
The weather is very cool here today but really nice!

God is my refuge and strength an ever present help in trouble therefore I will not fear though the earth giveaway and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea Psalm 46 : 1-2

Saturday, June 1, 2013


The New Normal adventure begins with Peru … from June 7th to June 23rd…
I will arrive in Cuzco on the 8th but I won't meet up with the group until Sunday the 9th
This will give me more time to adjust to the high altitude!

We will hike the Sacsayhuaman fortress…cycle the sacred Valley and visit Pisac market…hike Pisac ruins…Wednesday we start the Inca Trail to Pacaymayo and onto Machu Picchu by Friday!
Journey the Amazon! Hike Taquile Island and stay with local Quechua people! To top it off we will
Kayak Lake Titicacca!! Well…Off I go…follow me and I will post whenever possible!

I am both excited about the adventure and scared of the unknown!!
But the Righteous Live by faith Romans 3:11 and we Live by Faith not by sight! 2 Corinthians 5:7
So off into the unknow I go!!

Machu picchu

the Inca trail to MachuPicchu

I would like to thank Andrew from Active New Zealand for being so generous when hearing about the death of my Mell, knowing that we were looking at doing this trip with his company …gave as a bereavement gift to me this "New Normal Adventure"…an adventure to South America without Mell…that's the New Normal/without Mell here on this earth! But I intend to see him again! I live with that hope!

1 Thessalonians 4:13(Believers Who Have Died)Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no HOPE.

I have Hope!!