Fortunately and Unfortunately - the pros and cons

March 16, 2014 - Copacabana, Bolivia

Thanks for the comments. Always apppreciated. Yes, Rose, people were surfing down the dunes. Funniest was one lad who climbed to the top, sat on his board, fell off, and became a laughing stock as his board gracefully sped down the dune all by itself.

 

I've heard that about guinea pig, Sally. Think Vince will probably try some when we get to Cusco, which is writhing with it, apparently. I will have one teeny forkful. I can't get excited about it at all.

 

We should be able to meet you in Lima, Graham. Just keep us posted through email and/or the blog when you have firmer dates.

 

This is what we've been up to since the last blog. We left Arequipa for Chevay. It was a spectacular bus trip, all mountains and green valleys. We saw llamas, alapacas and vicunas grazing. The journey took 3.5 hours for 95 miles and only cost us 2 pounds 50 each. There was a festival going on in Chivay. Troupes of dancers in traditional costumes dancing to several bands of drums and brass. They played until 3 a.m.! There were several food stalls. Vince ate alpacca and potatoes for around 60p. I got some lovely fresh local cheese (soft cow's cheese) for about 60p for around 12 oz. Next day we walked a couple of miles to the thermal baths. Very hot. One pool was 40 degrees centigrade, the other 38. We paid around 3 pounds each.

 

On the third day we bussed to a place where there is a viewpoint for watchng condors, about 35 miles away. It took us 3 hours through the extremely mountainous terrain, at only 1 pound each. Unfortunately it was very cloudy. We sat around for ages and only saw one condor. That appeared after all the other tourists had left. By now it was cold and we were wondering how we were going to get to the next place. Fortunately we managed to hitch a lift in a truck. We gave the driver 8 soles, which is around 1 pound 60. But I don't think he was bthered whether we paid at all. A twenty minute journey saw us in Cabana de Condor. Very remote, with little going on apart from trekking for the tourists. A beatiful place, full of donkeys. We got ourselves a bg room for 6 pounds. There was hot water when the sun shone. Unfortunately it mostly didn't. We were so cold. We did manage to find a cheap place to eat. There was a menu each evening of a big pasta soup followed by a stew with whatever was available for that day. We had lots of veg and some meat the first day followed by different veg and meat the second day.The two courses, plus tea or coffee cost only 1 pound twenty each. We did a lot of walking and saw condors after all. Just not at the viewpoint we had expected to see them at. Yesterday was our final day there. We had meant to leave on the 9 a.m. bus back to Arequipa. Unfortunately my back decided to give way. We had treked for around three and a half hours the day before followed by another stroll and I suffered for it. I spent all day yesterday resting my back in a freezing cold room. At least Vince got to do the trek he had really wanted to do in the first place.Very lonely for me though. Fortunately we had some Ibprofen and some Paracetamol. I stuffed myself with those and spent the day reading, getting up a bit, lying down again. It was really hard. And has made me realise that I won't be able to travel so much in the future. Vince will be Mr.Lone Traveller!

 

Fortunately my back felt much easier today so we did catch the 9 a.m. bus, just a day late. It was a long journey - 5 hours. But we have safely arrived back in Arequipa. I'm still sore but nowhere near as sore as I was yesterday.

Me again. Nightmare 6 hour bus journey because my back was very painful again. However, we got to Puno and found a decent room with a hard bed. We got a good deal. A room, breakfast, taxi to bus station. All for our normal sort of a price. Plus the hot water was fab. And the lovely mattress and around 10 hours' kip sorted my back out. We bussed for around 3.5 hours to where we are now - Copacabana. No, not that one. We are now in Bolivia, not Brazil. Crossed the border very easily. And this place is fine. Very picturesque as it's on the lake Titikaka. Which is huge. Lovely and sunny in the day. Getting cold now, in the evening. We will stay another day here, just looking around, and leave for Paz tomorrow.

That's all for now. more photos to follow when we get to somewhere big with fast internet.

 


2 Comments

Graham J:
March 17, 2014
Looking at the direction you were going on the map, I thought you might be heading for Lake Titicaca and Bolivia. I've heard that Bolivia is cheap, but with more dogged attempts to part you from your money according to one source.
Dave Key:
March 19, 2014
Thanx for including some prices, Sarah. I begin to get some notion of costs in South America. Alpaca and chips only 60p, eh? Yum!
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