Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Hello Cusco

One of the side-effects of getting adjusted to the high altitude of Cusco and our new existence as volunteer's with Peru's Challenge is that our blog entries have been a little sporadic.

It has been a very cool week. We got here and almost immediately got impacted by the high altitude and also by a stomach bug that we think Heather picked up in Lima. Almost as soon as we got off the plane we (well, at least Heather and I - apparently kids are immune) started to feel the effects. Thankfully we seem to be somewhat adjusted now.

Once we arrived we were met by the Peru's Challenge team and taken to our home base in Cusco where we met the other volunteers. There are people here from the USA, South Africa, and Sweden, including a two-year old boy.

We received our orientation trip to the community where we will be volunteering on last Friday. It is amazing what the Peru's Challenge team has been able to accomplish here. Our focus will be on doing some teaching and completing construction of the local greenhouses, as well as assisting with the local woman's craft market and even doing some house visits with the local social workers.

Here's a look at the greenhouse (before we started on it) and the school area:

Saturday we had a trip into the centre of Cusco and a visit to the local black market. Unbelievable. Like a giant maze filled with people selling anything. A couple of times Chloe and I had to turn back as we were sure we would lose our bearings if we went deeper in. Here's a sample of movies that were available (note the titles)

Sunday had us horse-riding to explore some Inca ruins in Cusco.

One of the things we learned was the significance of various animals to the Inca people, and how they paid tribute to those creatures in their temples. Here's Chloe at the head of the snake and me at the tail.

We are definately not in Kansas anymore


  1. Oh no Toto, you are definitely not! Say "Hi" to the tin man for us!

  2. What a wonderful start to the South American trip! I bet you are glad you took horseback riding lessons Chloe....ask your Dad if this compares to trail riding at Cannon Beach?