Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Delaying Cuzco

Today, my team and I woke up at 3:15am (1:15am California time) to leave for el aeropuerto for our 6am flight to Cuzco. We had a whole itinerary lined up with leisurely tours around Cuzco before heading up here to Machu Picchu. Of course, as with most strict schedules, comes setbacks.

When the flight that was supposed to leave for another city in Peru five minutes after us started to board before we did, the team and I soon realized that there was a problem. Our flight was delayed a little bit. With the newly found extra hour, we decided to eat breakfast at a place near our departure gate. When we finally get into the gate, we were all finally relieved to get on the plane. I, along with some of the girls decided to doze off since we had time...

I woke up a few minutes later to everyone getting ready to leave the plane. I started to panic because I wasn't sure where we were. I started to ask, "Are we there already?!" Surprised in my mind that I actually missed the whole flight.

A couple of the girls on my team looked at me like I was crazy and reassured me that we hadn't even left yet--we actually had to get off due to the flight being delayed even further. We had left the gate so we had to exit the plane via stairs at two of the exits, the same way celebrities exit planes as pictured on tv. It was my first time leaving the plane that way, which I liked a little bit.

So anyway, we had gone back to one of the gates where all of the delayed flights were displaced to, and for the next four and a half hours we would wait to be called up to finally board our flight to Cuzco. In the meantime throughout the day, I had started reading a Christian fiction book called The Promises She Keeps by Erin Healy. I haven't finished yet, so I will write about the book another time.

So, back to Cuzco. We board our flight and end up sitting in random seats (more like me sitting in a random seat away from the girls) due to other people just sitting wherever they wanted on this flight. I sat next to two guys, a father and his 16-year-old son from Florida, visiting Cuzco and Machu Picchu for the son's first time. They also had family in Lima. It was cool talking to them and getting to know how they got to that moment. That's one of the reasons why I like sitting next to strangers, but I'm rambling now.

Anyway, we fly and get to Cuzco. I had the aisle seat so I spent my time either talking to the father and son, reading, or sleeping. When we finally got to Cuzco, we all piled into a large van to start heading over to the train station for Machu Picchu.

We took a pit stop on the way to the train station at this beautiful place, called the Sacred Valley of the Incas. We took a few pictures. It was windy but wow, it was breathtaking. This whole area is only part of where the ancient Inca (or Inka) tribe lived and thrived thousands of years ago. It was trippy being in such a historical spot (even though it won't even compare to the ruins I'll see tomorrow, Wednesday).

We almost ended up being late as a result to stopping here, but it was worth it because we still made it to our train on time, barely! I didn't realize how narrow (barely two cars can fit) the streets are. Going around the mountains really fast with our driver also made me a little dizzy. 

As we got to the train station, we boarded PeruRail, one of the two trains that goes to Machu Picchu. It was really spacious and such a smooth ride. We arrived to Machu Picchu an hour and a half later, and now here I am! 

We checked into this adorable inn before heading out to dinner then shopping in the markets around here. I must say, before this trip I was always too scared to bargain but I'm starting to improve in bargaining in Spanish and with Soles (Peru's currency). 

That is my trip for now! Sorry if it seemed a little choppy and short in some aspects, but I'm going to go to bed. We hike Machu Picchu in a few hours, but I have to wake up early. So chau for now! [:

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