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Published: October 23rd 2007
We travelled by tourist bus to Puno which is by the Bolivian Boarder and major portal of lake Titikaka. As the state of Cuzco is 3rd charka ‘The navel of the world’ this lake is known as 2nd charka ‘The womb of mankind’. The lake itself is 3810 meters above sea level which brought on more huffing lung activity for me. The lakes are a whopping vision of 8562 sq meters in circumference. We went to the legendary floating islands called Uros. The locals have used heaps of natural reeds to build these small islands, which are so fragile that one average sized lady from our tour fell through the floor and lost her shoe, yet most of the islands ladies are very buxom lasses.
It is claimed that the people rarely leave the islands. They fish; they make foods from the sweet reeds and collect eggs and meat from chickens. There are no dogs on the island as they are considered bad luck; you’ll find a couple of llamas, some cats that chase the mice that eat the corn. Apart from the 15 layers of skirt they wear as tradition to support the hoola hoola style hip dancing just
for us the photo obsessed tourist, these ladies wore cool bowler hats some three sizes too small. Both men and women wore homemade shoes ingeniously re-cycled from strips of old car tyres.
These Uros people have lived here since time began which after all my historical travels so far I am beginning to wonder when that time actually was. It is claimed that they have survived through the ages of Lupaca, Aymaran, Inca and European conquests from strange talking men (those Spaniards) wearing silly iron armour. Along with famine, plagues, great floods, wars and other various God like curses these people triumphed and they have been labelled by the formally life beaten Peruvian and other time worldly survivors as the first human race who are greatly respected in this country and now closely observed for life sustaining qualities for the future of mankind by anthropologists and statistic collectors around the world. The Uros pride themselves on observing the modern day man and our messed up societies from the safety of their straw islands, sticking to very ancient traditions. The people are so sweet and the kids work hard to bring in the cash by singing traditional classics from
around the globe, farojacka for the French, twinkle, twinkle Uros star for us Brits.
They believe in various Spirit Gods of the sacred mother lakes and pray daily to them, they also believe that when the spirit leaves the body during great illness, this is odd as most people believe when the spirit leaves the body when you are very ill in fact you’re actually very dead and you do not need the old body anymore. They have special medicine men that help bring you back to the living and the illness disappears.
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