Monday, February 08, 2010

A Wedding with Llamas

A recent comment (of course I read all the comments, who doesn't) suggested that I post  more about our trip to Peru.  The trip took place during the summer of 2008.
The internet is a wild place and you never know who is going to read (or copy) your stuff.  As a blogger I hope as many people as possible to read my stuff.  But no one want some criminal mind to misuse information you post.  After joining Facebook, I would suspect anyone looking to collect info would go there but you never know.  I only bring this up, to explain why real names will be missing from this story.  I wouldn't want any family members reading (they usually don't) to think I have a second family on the side or something.  Unlike that infamous Governor's trip, this was a trip to Peru, not Argentina. 

Our Peru trip was centered around a wedding.  Our daughter, Maggie, married a great guy, Bart.  Bart's mom is from Peru (a coastal town).  His parents met when his dad was in the Peace Corps down in Peru.  Bart was born and raised in the states but has visited Peru many times.  Both Maggie and Bart are world travelers.
The priest was Irish and looked like he could have been my twin brother.

It's a long flight down there from Chicago, but it's only one hour difference in time zones, so Chicagoans don't have that jet lag problem.  But check your globe, this is south of the equator.  We had a connections in Maimi FL, and Lima before we landed in Cusco.  Anyone heading for Machu Picchu mostly likely will travel through Cusco which is a wonderful ancient city.

One warning about Cusco - altitude.  Unless you're from some mountain area, you probably are going to suffer some altitude effects.  Cusco is higher (11,000 ft) than Machu Picchu (8000 ft).  If I were to plan a return trip I would head to the Sacred Valley first and then visit Cusco.

I believe all of the first time visitors in our group suffered some degree of altitude sickness.  However, we still enjoyed seeing the sites around the city.  Bart's mom did some extensive planning and arranging for the whole event.  Maggie and Bart had a bus waiting for us at the Cusco airport.  Tours were setup in advance.  All the arrangements worked out great.

Because of the common altitude problem the tourists experience, our hotel (most do) offer their guests free herbal Coca tea (leaves contain small amounts of cocaine).  I believe the tea helped.  But I wouldn't want to take a drug test soon after a trip there.

A very graphic religious statue in the hotel lobby (holding a severed head).

There was a mobile phone store close to our hotel.  It appears that sex sells in Peru too.

After Cusco we took a bus down into the Sacred Valley.  The Urubamba river flows through the valley and we stayed at two very nice hotels near the town of Urubamba.  It was just outside of that town where Maggie and Bart tied the knot.

Colorful marketplace in Pisac.

Celebration parade (just for us??) in Ollantaytambo.

One very unusual place was Moray where we climbed down into this enormous terraced circular hole.


Here's a satellite view from Google maps (you might need to zoom in):

View Larger Map

Climbing around Machu Picchu.


secretagentwoman said...

That looks like an incredible experience. I don't know about llamas, though - they have an issue with me. I've been bitten on the head by one on two separate occasions.

elementalmydear said...

what gorgeous photos! that must have been a fascinating trip as well as a sentimental one!

lisleman said...

It was incredible walking around a place that was built by hand hundreds of years ago. I certainly write comments quickly so please no offense intended, but what you wrote sounds to me like the SAME llama bit you on two different occasions. If that's correct, I'd suggest staying away from that particular llama. Maybe I didn't meet any mean ones.

lisleman said...

thanks - it was enjoyable and gave us some great memories.

OneStonedCrow said...

Great Post lisleman! - and a great set of informative images - I've no desire to travel the world but Machu Picchu is one place I'd like to visit if I had the resources ...

dave hambidge said...

The colours in the market place shot are spectacular! I assume Claro was a touristy shop?

Ocean Girl said...

Glad I didn't miss this post. Coca tea? Is it like Coke? All the photos were excellent. Did they say why they made the terraced hole? I know this post was kind of under cover but I would have loved to see the picture of the couple tied the knot:) Was it an open air wedding? You know there is a term for a person like me, they are called "busybody kepo":)

lisleman said...

I believe Coke did use coca at one time but I don't know if it still does. It's a very nice herbal tea that's greenish in color. The hole - Apparently, the Inca's experimented with different plants growing at different levels of the terraced sides. The levels will have slightly different temperatures and amounts of sunlight.

Indoor wedding - there's one picture on a previous post
I might put more pictures from the trip up later.
hey I don't mind the questions - it shows interest on your part - thanks

lisleman said...

No it was a mobile phone service shop. The round costume reminds me of some candy and nothing to do with a phone.

lisleman said...


secretagentwoman said...

Possibly the same one - same petting zoo, differnt years. They sneak up behind you. Stealth llamas.

debbie_suburbsanity said...

What great photos and narrative. I'm still a little troubled by that statue. What is that about?

dave hambidge said...

What? Good grief. So is the girlie by the door in traditional dress?

And have you just inserted this information at the photo or did it miss it?

lisleman said...

yeah I was too and I'm not sure but I noticed their religious art is more graphic than what I'm used to.

lisleman said...

That info was there but I did correct a typo in another spot. I should get my daughter to proof read but she has a real job. traditional dress - ? - maybe it would be an updated traditional dress? the colors and hat look traditional.

dave hambidge said...

NOTE TO SELF Read the WHOLE post!!!

Colours still look excellent.

unknownmami said...

I'm so glad you posted more pictures. They are spectacular. What a wonderful place!

Maureen@IslandRoar said...

Machu Picchu is definitely on my To-Do list. Looks like an amazing trip. And for a wedding; cool.

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