21.04.2007 - 23.04.2007 25 °C
We caught a train from Cuzco to Aguscaliente, the town that leads you to Machu Picchu. I think this is the nicest town we had seen so far. We checked into our hotel then went for lunch at this crappy restaurant that our guide suggested. OK for him he gets his food for free. They were over priced, slow had a crap view and at one point a little ginger kitten strolled in and did it´s business in a big pot plant by our table. We all wanted to leave but none of us had the balls to tell Frankie our guide, so we all sat there and bit our lips.
The first day we mucked around shopped a little and rested. The views were absolutely spectacular you are surrounded closely by these menacing towering mountains. I just prayed there were no earthquakes or land slides while we were there.
That night we had takeaways for dinner so before embarking on that mission we learn´t the Spanish way of saying takeaways "para llevar" and seemed to be understood fine. We had Mexican and it was really nice. We have not yet been dissapointed with any of the food it is beautiful. They make the most awesome soups over here, and there is such a variety of restaurants to choose from you couldn´t possibly get bored.
The next morning we were up at 4:30 in the morning to catch the 5:30 bus up the hill to Machu Picchu. They had really nice buses here and within half an hour we were at the top. We wanted to get there early to avoid the crowds and see the sun rise. It was awesome, and just like the pictures. Our tour guide reminded me of a Peruvian version of Mr Willy Wonka it was comical. He took us around and let us know about it´s history. It was built in abouth the 15th century and then was over growen and covered until an American (I think) explorer who was following the Inca trail discovered it again in 1911. No one is exactly sure why the site was abandonned as it was big enough and well designed to house 800 to 1000 people. There are speculations of course, but they are only speculations.
There is far too much to talk about on this subject and I could be here all day, unfortunately I don´t have all day, things to do places to see, so I´ll keep it short.
On our bus ride back down the hill a little boy chased the bus the entire way. The track was winding and he would run down steps out in front of the bus then stand on the side of the rode waving, yealling "goodbye, adios". He ran all the way now remember it took half an hour by bus to get up, so it´s quite a distance. At the bottom the driver stopped and picked him up, he was dressed in Native costume. When he got on he yelled again "Goodbye Adios" then said something in what we think is Cetchuin (don´t know how to spell) which we didn´t understand. He then opened up his little shoulder bag to collect tips, it was so funny. Anything for a tip in this country, he was exhausted though. Later on we found out a bunch of kids do this all day, and they are in it with the bus drivers who get a cut of their tips.
Later we caught the train again for the journey back, in true Peruvian style it broke down on us twice and we were left sitiing in the dark. We left at 5 and got home around 10:30. Thankfully a lady next to us had a cross word book and a tourch so we could amuse ourselves while we were waiting.