Thursday, May 26, 2016

Locals in Miraflores

Little bit behind on the blog. Blame it on the summer. Blame it on the trips and adventures and the moments with friends. Blame it on the fried-brain feeling that happens post-work each weekday.

I think I had to spend some time processing the Peru trip too. It had been a bit built up in my mind... Peru, the Inca ruins, the colonial town of Cusco, the textiles and the food and the language and the general culture. Peru wasn't quite what I expected. The city of Lima was a bit more smoggy, the Inca ruins felt like a crowded, historical Disneyworld for pseudo-adventurers that purchased a bus ticket, and the Spanish language didn't return to me as I fudged my way through broken conversations.

So what did Peru become? A trip to a Latin-version of San Francisco (hello fog) with lots of ceviche and lots of history and lots of pisco and lots of wandering. The photos paint a better story than words.

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Monday, May 9, 2016

Machu Picchu Trek

I finally went to Machu Picchu. With soulfriend Kathryn and our guide, Walter, we completed a two-day trek along the Inca Trail into Machu Picchu Valley. We suffered from altitude sickness, slight muscle fatigue and an extreme allergic reaction. Like very extreme. But it's cool... you can trek to Machu Picchu with your eyes closed. No big deal. Give us more of a challenge.

We didn't take the easy route... and by that, I mean we didn't take the train all the way and the shuttle the rest of the way. Sticky and sweating, we descended down into the valley below. We took in the wide views of these Inca ruins and the towering Huayna Picchu peak behind. We made it.

It's like Disneyland for adventure seekers and history buffs. We spent two days exploring the ruins, obsessing over llama friends, developing *extreme* sunburns and soaking in the stories of this place. All in all, you should go to Machu Picchu. You want to already... so just do it.

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Saturday, May 7, 2016

Good Vibes in Cusco

Note: I visited Peru for about a week during the month of May. Pre and post trip, life has been incredibly busy (though GOOD!) + left zero time for blogging. Therefore, I'm hopping into my time machine and jumping back to May to share stories about my venture to América del Sur.

Where's the Airbnb?

After two flight delays, I was worried about missing my connecting flight in LA. I left work early + raced to the airport to try to jump on an earlier flight. Gotta get to Cusco + reunited with my soul-friend, STAT. After a series of unfortunate Uber pool passengers, a minor episode of tears, permission to skip all of security, and then a little sprint to my gate, I made it onto the flight and onto LA and finally to Lima.

From Lima to Cusco, I found my Spanish *extremely* lacking. Case in point: My driver from the airport to my Airbnb began peppering me with questions. In my race to keep up with his Spanish, I responded "yes, I have a son." Hermano and hijo are NOT the same thing. Duh, I know this. I should've recognized my mistake a beat quicker when the driver asked about my husband, and then my boyfriend. "Nope, I don't have either."

He finally dropped me off at Plaza San Blas, and I climbed step after step, one long hill that rivaled San Francisco, until I found my Airbnb and my soul-friend on Calle Kiskapata. I have arrived.

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Museo del Pisco

What's the best way to say hello to Peru? Pisco sours of course. We got apps + alcohol at the Museo del Pisco. Unfortunately, the dramatic altitude change + alcohol + jetlag + little food didn't help with my inevitable altitude sickness. BLEH. Pro tip: If you plan to visit Machu Picchu, arrive a few days early + hang in Cusco to adapt to the altitude. The guidebooks don't lie.

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Return to Cusco

We departed from Cusco for our Machu Picchu trek. Fortunately, we returned to the small colonial town after Machu Picchu and spent a lazy day shopping, exploring and eating.

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