Sunday, October 7, 2012

Peru-Day 5-Machu Picchu

I had requested a wake up call for 515 am as our meeting time with the group was at 620 to finally enter Machu Picchu and in order to get breakfast. In our first hotel and in this one, we did not have a clock. It made me crazy the first night when I would anxiously wake to see what time it was anticipating the call and not knowing what time it was. Again, this was the case. Again, I woke often, rising to judge the sunlight outside, anticipating the call. I dozed off and on and woke again with it bright. I hopped on the phone calling reception asking for the time-6 a.m. FUDGE. We flew out of bed Home Alone style, throwing clothes on, repacking bags, while simultaneously using the bathroom and checking out, to meet the party on time. I still cannot believe it worked out. Granted, our guide knew what hotel we were at and he could have come after us, but it would have delayed the group and I didn't want to be that couple.

We boarded our bus that took us into Machu Picchu and began another mini hike up into the ruins. Like anything so remote and preserved, seeing it first hand will always never compare to pictures. We soaked it in, reveling again at the sheer labor these people had over a century to build this empire, and not only that, but in the locations they chose. It really is beyond my comprehension and completely humbling.

I promise, it's not a green screen.

The entire group.

We toured the grounds for a few hours, grabbed lunch, and headed back to Aguas Calientes to enjoy the city for a few hours before our departure.

The main square in Aguas Calientes

Made a few stops here, but the sign lies, it was most definitely not 24 hours.

Our transition back to Cusco was via train to Otelttaytompo (sp) and then make the final drive by van into the city. It was then that Scott´s health began to further decline. Showing symptoms of the flu-body aches, upset stomach, it made for a long 2 hour train ride and additional 2 hour van ride. We checked into our hotel around 615 pm and he was down for the count.

Again, gracefully, the staff spoke enough English for me to ask questions about finding a pharmacy and likely what to ask for. I ventured out into the main square in search of the pharmacia and used my best Spanish along with a great game of sick charades with the pharmacist to bring back something called NastyFlu, somewhat comparable to TheraFlu, Gatorade, and Sprite. He slept, I peppered the hotel staff with questions about finding a laundromat, luggage repair (broke my zipper on my suitcase-main one of course) and canceling our half day tour of the city.

Thankfully, this illness/allergic reaction to the bites/altitude sickness/whatever struck on the best day it could have, where our tour could be cancelled and he could just rest. Too rub salt in an open wound, Scott´s work had an emergency situation that required him to get to the business center in our hotel where emails flew back and forth at 10 pm on a Friday night, PST, 12 am, in Peru. We went to bed without dinner-none wanted from him, no hunger again for me, watching one of the only English channels-E!, which only airs E! News and Fashion Police.

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