Guinea pigs

Trip Start Feb 14, 2007
1
9
13
Trip End Jul 12, 2007


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Flag of Peru  ,
Monday, April 23, 2007

After a very early flight with supposedly Star Peru, although i am yet to be convinced as all of their announcements were in an Irish accent welcoming us aboard "Ryan Air", we arrived in Cusco city and met our team leader Oswell.
Yet another early wake up and off to explore local communities and see a few sights before reaching Ollantaytumbo, which is very near the starting point of the Inca trail.
At 9am the next morning we left for Km 82, the starting point and walked 10km the first day. It was relatively easy and enjoyable, apart from the loos, which were absolutely disgusting and dirty. At one campsite, katie went to the loo and I said "Katie..you havenīt flushed" and she replied "no G, there is no flush, its just a drop pit!"
When arriving at our stop for lunch I was expecting a blanket on the floor, with packed lunches and some water. I was very mistaken. We each had a bowl to wash our hands in, then given a glass of orange juice before sitting down, to a beautifully laid table. We had soup to start with, followed by trout and vegetables! Then of course, there was the option of coffee, herbal tea or coco leaves. Whilst walking we only had to carry day bags, The porters carry everything else, upto 30kilos each and hiking the trail as well. Its actually unbelievable, they have to carry the tents, the food, the chairs, our bags, and their own stuff! The eldest porter on the team is 63. Makes you feel so pathetic when you arrive at checkpoints and they are clapping at you saying "well done!", it should be the other way round. 
The second day was the hardest, about 12km and the first 7 were all up hill, upstairs and hills, and through rainforest. We reached the highest point on the second day, 4200 metres. I didnt really have any problems with altitude at all, some people had a few problems adjusting and others i think just had psychosymatic problems!
On the fourth day, we reached Machu Picchu at 7 am after walking two hours. Made it just intime for Sunrise, it was very rewarding, and our tour was very informative and interesting.
Now back in Cusco and we all went out for a final supper last night and Katie and I tried the local delicacy "Guinea pig". As they are so small you have to eat it with your hands, and there isnīt that much meat on it, but it was okay. Not my favourite meat and I am not in any hurry to have it again anytime soon.
lots of love
Gabbie
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