– Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail, Cheryl Strayed
Really happy and fortunate because I got tickets to WAYNA PICCHU!!!!
The maximum capacity to go up to Huayna Picchu is 400 people per day divided into two groups of 200 each one.
It was about another hour’s climb though, and I was soaked. Soaked, and my brain was hardly working I think, because all I could think of was mindlessly taking another step up, up… it was quite therapeutic though, that sort of zoned-out feeling.
I’m actually a little nervous about tomorrow’s 21km if I let myself think about it. The supposedly ‘hardest’ day. But then I think about Agung and I think, can it really be harder than that??? Batur and agung?? I still take Agung as one of the best things I’ve done in life.
It wasn’t, though. I was pretty nervous after reading the reviews, but.. the expectations I suppose, made it more manageable than i expected. The toughest part was the optional bit, where we could hike for another hour up to see a lake. Some people rested in their tents for that bit. It was, however, a gorgeous day.
Photos from days 2 / 3:
Other things and memories I love about the trek:
I like the flowers / I love the daffodils / I like the mountains / I love the rolling hills 🎵 I also like avoiding passing horses, grazing cows and the occasional mud-splashing truck with my (now) blistered feet. In harmony with Pachamama, soaking in the Andean history and philosophy
Seeps in as I race to the toilet immediately after I drop my backpack
hot yummy giant ‘corn’ thingy on a cold day
omg. this ice cream, made of some cactus milk. tasted amazing, and yes it had that cactus taste. i loved it. so much!!!!
love these details
i feel some sort of affection for this photo and am always amused when i look at it because both of them are like ‘meh IDGAF’ LOL
look at these striations
Notes: (yes, i take NOTES on many of these tours 8-))
Probably my favourite, though it’s darkened quite a lot by now.
I took two – I gave them the first, this was the second. I wonder how that turned out. And what they did with it.
Yay Arequipa. I remember this place fondly.
Bus from Puno to Arequipa with Cruz del Sur – 40 soles. Cheap and comes with a meal. I bought it from the counter on that same morning. Turns out bus to Cusco has a strike.
Welcome to Arequipa!!! Or Arearearearrrrrrrquipa! (the bus companies tout)
Aww. Rather calm and peaceful! This picture pretty much conveys how I feel about the city. So much calmer than what I experienced in Cusco / Lima / Puno.
i took a picture of this because it was constructed hundreds of years ago.
i felt a little creeped out to be honest. in my head i was thinking, WHY am i here in this monastery. am i really interested in the ways the nuns lived. i started picturing them with their black veils sitting on this chair. and then i hurried out.
i took this picture because i noticed the hat. i wonder if there were figures like these with hats in the churches of other countries, or if this was uniquely tied to their local historical cultural aspects.
a volcano this close. like, just at the side of the city. i stared at it for awhile. i wonder if they feel any form of trepidation at all, living this close. hmm. or i am too used to and too sheltered by Singapore’s almost-perpetual safety. this was an aspect i failed to consider in my thesis – the fact that Singapore is so safe it augments the danger in all parts of the world. re: natural disasters
The Incas believed in worshipping the mountains and children were offered as sacrifices. They walked for miles (chewing coca) for weeks.
I feel like… in this trip it hit me that the history of mankind stretches on a timeline so incredibly far back. it’s one of the things i already know, but it just sank in, like a stone at the pit of my stomach, the fact that this history existed and the Incas once ruled an empire so grand it stretched from the Andes to the Amazon, and they believed in gods that my pre-trip self would have dismissed. How our notions of gods has shifted, from nature and mountains and condors to Christ and others today. Culture and beliefs and norms are always changing, ever-changing in the timeline of history.
They spoke about the Incas throughout South America – i just kept hearing references to the Incas (or at least the later part, which is highly influential to my memory)
The Incans didn’t have a writing system. Can you imagine that? Not having a writing system? How do you record your stories? Your memories? Letters?
They had runners – they formed a relay system, messengers who carried messages from one place to another, from Cusco to Quito it took about 10 days, across bridges and slopes and stone pavements. Having climbed all the way up to Machu Picchu I can only say they are insanely fit. Gosh, I am ashamed.
Instead of a writing system, what they’ve found is that the tangible aspects of communication lay within the quipu – knotted strings that look like friendship bands.
“While scholars have yet to translate the quipu, we do know that information was embedded in the quipu in a number of different ways. The strings in a quipu were dyed in many different colors, and the strings are connected in many different ways, with a wide variety and number of simple and complex knots. Together the type of wool, the colors, the knots and the joins hold information that was once readable by several South American societies. Today we have only an inkling of what stories these amazing threads might be holding for us.”
“The latest in a long history of South American societies to use the technique, the Inca empire used quipus to communicate a wide variety of political, economic, genealogical and other kinds of information to keep their enormous empire working. According to 16th century historians such as Inca Garcilaso de la Vega, quipu were carried throughout the empire by relay riders, called chasquis, who brought the information along the Inca road system, keeping the Inca rulers up to date with the goings on in their farflung empire”
I’m just so blown over by the Incan history, it could be this age or something (since i did learn about the history of civilisations back then but it just didnt register)
The Incas have never seen humans on animals prior to the invasion by the Spaniards, which could be a partial reason for the success of the Spanish conquest
What was Singapore like during the time of the Incas? Who lived here? Did it exist? I don’t even know. Hundreds of years later people / scholars are going to study our society and our ways of living. Maybe this blog will serve as an artefact. LOL. That’s a pretty cool thought HAHAHA
It sounds so crazy and morbid but I feel like I appreciate my life so much more now, now that I’m back, and I just know I’ll never take actions to disappear from the earth no matter how tough things get. I feel so thankful everyday for being alive. This could be partially attributed by the fact that I’m in lala-land, the first weeks of school (we’ll see during practicum) but whenever I feel crappy I think about how simply being alive is such a blessing. It’s such a nice thought, to know I feel like that. I truly hope I’ll still feel like this in my older days. But for now, this life is short, and this life is a blessing.
I mean, it’s times like this again I realise that I learnt and I just want to go back again to learning about everything, not in theory not on papers and pages (though they have their merits) but learning from everything around me
Off to Cusco! HURRAY! Highly anticipated, and the last activity-filled city. At last.