Hola! Mañana is our last day in Cuzco...at least for the next week. I´m sad that language class will be over and hope I don´t lose too much of what I´ve learned in the past few days. I´m loving Cuzco, but so far, it´s the only part of Peru I´ve seen so it´s kind of a limited view. For now, here are just a few general impressions and observations of Cuzco...
The streets (most of them) are incredibly narrow. On our walk from our homestay to The Plaza de Armas, there´s one street that´s barely wide enough for a car. and some cars only have an inch or so to spare. but this seems normal and people walk along the very narrow sidewalk and hop back and forth between the road and the sidewalk letting each other and cars pass. along this street, there are homes and businesses. In addition, many walls are really high - I took pictures, but it´s still hard to describe. It makes for gorgeous views down steep hills leading to the main plaza.
This should normally be a very busy time in Cuzco, but it´s tranquillo because the trains just reopened so the normal masses of tourists aren´t here. I feel pretty bad for the people who make a living off of tourism. The markets should be crowded, but from our perspective, it´s nice that it´s not so crowded. I´m doing my best to support them and spent a lovely afternoon shopping for goods.
In case it wasn´t clear from my last post, the tamales sucre are amazing. I will miss the tamale vendors on the sidewalks. Someone in Atlanta should look into that...I think they´d make a killing if they set up stand along Clifton Rd...
The weather has been beautiful! Crisp, clearn mornings, sunny & warm afternoons, and chilly evenings. So far, no rain, a few clouds, but mostly sunny. May is the start of the dry season - let´s hope it stays that way the next 2 weeks.
The traffic here is chaotic...i´d describe it as somewhere between Atlanta and Cairo. There are stoplights and stop signs which drivers respect (unlike Cairo) but crossing the street is sort of like playing Frogger - the cars really don´t stop and almost speed up for pedestrians (sort of like Atlanta). but, with patience, crossing a street eventually happens.
Cuzcoans LOVE festivals! While we´ve been here, they´ve been celebrating the Fiesta de la cruces. Siri and I can´t really figure out what it means, but our teachers at school say that everyone just really likes fiestas. it´s an excuses for musica, bailar, y cervesa. muy cervesa! We´ve witnessed to parades so far with eleborate costumes, lots of dancing and loud music. We got pictures, but obviously they don´t capture the music and watching the procession. We went into one of the main, gorgeous, grande Catedrals on Plaza de Armas. the ornate details inside the church were incredible. It was a mix of traditional Peruvian art and classic Catholic themes.
Ok, time for bed...Our Inca trek starts Saturday! Our trekking company said they´d pick us up between 4am and 6am...We´re hoping for some clarification tomorrow. :-) Adios!!!