Despite the depressing World Cup match result for England, the rest of my weekend has been rather successful. We visited Maras-Moray after a pretty spontaneous friday night booking, which turned out to be an awesome day trip. We also went on our first peruvian night out, leaving Sunday free as a day to eat, sleep, recover and read to our hearts content!
Latin American’s just don’t seem to enjoy organisation or timing, because we had yet another kerfuffle with our transport. After sitting on a standstill coach for 10 minutes, a lot of the girls were getting very agitated and shouting ‘Que es el problema?!’ at the driver who clearly hadn’t got a clue what was going on. The problem is, I think you have to be willing to embrace the culture here: things don’t usually work out the way you expect them to and you get what you pay for (we paid the equivalent of £4 for transport), but you always get to your destination eventually and I love being able to embrace the relaxed way of life. We eventually got going on our journey and looking back on it, the minor delay didn’t actually affect our day at all 🙂 No need for complaints!
On the way to Moray we stopped at Chinchero, a small village in the Sacred Valley, and we were given a tutorial on how to make coloured wool. It was actually 10x more complicated than I imagined it to be and it was also nice to learn a bit more about the Peruvian culture. I feel like we spend so much time rushing around and taking photos of things without taking the time to appreciate the back stories, so yeah, it was a great mid-journey stop.
We arrived at the ruins of Moray at around 11.30 for a full tour. Once again there was an endless amount of steps and hills; the incas must have been a fit bunch with great legs and bums, that’s for sure! Moray just looks like a load of circles from above but after our tour guide imparted his knowledge, we learnt that the circles were up to 30m apart from each other in depth and created completely different temperature conditions in order to study the effect of different climates on crops. Clever, huh?! Not gonna lie though, my favourite part of the trip was definitely bounding down the huge inca steps to partake in a group ritual in the centre of the ruins. We all held hands and were told to ‘let the energy flow’ whilst listening to our guide play some (slightly terrible) recorder music. He then said we were all granted one wish. I looked around the circle and there were a lot of apprehensive giggles and rolling eyes, but of course I decided to take my wish seriously. So if the Incan Gods can go ahead and start processing my request then that would be fantastic.
After Moray, we headed over to the Maras salt mines. I have to admit this was a pretty incredible sight and I’d recommend it to anyone looking for something inexpensive to do when in Cusco! We learnt a bit about the different types of salt and then were given the opportunity to explore for ourselves. I think we were all pretty tired and chilled out by this point, so we found a cute spot to just sit and appreciate the views before grabbing some empañadas and hopping on the coach for the journey back home.
When we got back the England match was just about to start. There’s only 3 brits here in the volunteer house at the moment: Me, Vicki and a girl called Lilly. So of course, we donned our faces with the red and white flag, grabbed some beers and marked our territory amongst a LOT of italian supporters! Sadly, we lost, but the team-spirit was there and it was such a fun evening that we didn’t want it to end just because the game was over…. so we moved the party to the town.
My first peruvian night out was an interesting experience to say the least. The clubs serve drinks with tap-water ice meaning that some people get ill afterwards, there’s an abundance of creepy men, there’s no ban against smoking inside and the freezing temperatures mean that you’re dancing in coats, jeans and wooly socks… Yet, somehow, despite being the only sober one, I still managed to have a damn good night and of course the dance moves made an appearance! I told one of the guys at our volunteer house that the reason I don’t drink is so that I can make sure my dance moves are on-point. His reply was that everyone else is too drunk to notice that I’d be dancing well anyway but I said ‘Darling, I don’t dance for other people, I dance for myself’. His response was a hi-5 followed by: ‘People need to take note of your attitude’
Damn right they do, #SOMOSMUJERES.
Of course, Sunday was a day of rest. I spent the entire 24 hours in pyjamas just lazing around, napping, reading, watching football, eating good food and socialising. This truly is the simple life here in Cusco, and so far it’s shaping up to be one of my most favourite cities and adventures to date.
Stay tuned for this weeks shenanigans.
And also sending lots of love to my friends and family who take the time to read this, I just hope it inspires you to get adventuring for yourselves!