Why Are We So Sick, Oh Yes, Altitude!
Trip Start Jul 10, 2007
46Trip End Mar 11, 2008
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From sea level to a mountain height of 12,500 feet in three hours at 500 miles per hour... don't do it! Being unaccustomed to mountainous life, we decided to place our Peruvian adventure in the "capable" hands of a "reputable" Canadian travel company. It proved to be a mistake. What a disappointment as well as a planning disaster. We were sent to the clouds too quickly and were all quite ill from high altitude sickness, enough to bring on much concern. We had to endure rather disconcerting pain, worry and side effects.
The day after the rocket soar into space, and without having any time to acclimatize, we were sent on a 3 hour rough stormy sea ride to an island on Lake Titicaca. This adventure was looking more and more like the voyage of the "S.S. MINNOW" and yours truly looking more and more like a green Gilligan...and I always wanted to be Marianne
On our way home, we did stop and docked on a floating island made of reeds. This was the best part of the day as its self sufficient community cheered us with their sunny and quirky personalities, survival skills and infectious smiles! Also, twenty minutes away, our room and comfy beds were waiting for us and there would be NO MORE WAVES.
Lake Titicaca could have been a pleasurable experience but due to the poor planning of our travel company, bad weather and feeling lousy, we were quite relieved to move to lower ground.
Cuzco: 11,150 feet
This lovely old town is 1,350 feet below Puno which made a positive difference on the headache scale. It was still challenging to climb up and down the six flights of stairs to our family room but well worth the effort as it was located in a rustic courtyard. The dining room of this Bed and Breakfast had spectacular roof top views of Cuzco. It was a cat's paradise.
In Peru, when the construction of a building is completed, a tax is added
We came to a conclusion that we toured many countries during their rainy and demonstration seasons. This time in Cuzco, it was the farmers' turn to be angry at the government. Roads were blocked, rocks were tossed, tires were burnt and we were locked in our Bed and Breakfast one particular morning wondering if our trip to Machu Picchu would be jeopardized. The streets were animated with many placards, chanting and people sporting colourful attire. Ty checked out the public safety units (riot squads), the boys took pictures of the local llamas and cats and I made it my personal duty to check out the great woven belts in the store windows...they sure know how to work with alpaca wool.
When the roads cleared up and we removed the larger stones from the pathways, we were able to visit the five awe-inspiring archaeological sites located near Cuzco.