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Published: December 17th 2015
Yesterday was really just a travel day, but wow! The sites you can see on the bus from Bolivia to Peru. The Bolivian countryside had some mountains, was this beautiful verdant green and was this strange mix of traditional and modern life. Traditional Bolivians worked the fields, perhaps tended sheep or their garden plots, while on the modern side of things there is a massive road building effort which had us in construction most of the way. We were required to first cross the lake via ferry, while our large bus was also ferried over separately. That was a fun experience and then further down the road we had the privilege of leaving Bolivia and walking across the border back to Peru where we find ourselves right now.
So, on to today, a fantastic experience that I will remember forever. First off - turn your map of Lake Titicaca over. You do have a map of Lake Titicaca right in front of you right!? Well if not, if you turn it upside down, with a bit of imagination you can see the shape of a puma chasing a rabbit. Lake Titicaca translates to "puma stone". Or if you are feeling
proud of your Peruvian excursion, you say just like our tour guide did- Peru gets the Titi, Bolivia gets the caca! Amen.
We were ferried over to the floating island of Uros where we were given an introduction to the present and past history of the local people. They were very kind and their traditional way of life is very much supported through tourism. I would definitely recommend visiting the lake, and when you do, please don´t worry about being a tourist. You are adding much needed money into the economy as well as helping to ensure the world has a greater appreciation for these island people. The floating islands are literally floating! I know you might be prone to think that is just a gimmick, but it is not. The people have to continually cut and lay new reed every week because the bottom layers start to rot and their property would literally disintegrate without this constant oversight. The people were extremely friendly, inviting us into their homes, telling us their stories and ultimately showing us their beautiful handiwork. We departed and stopped along the way where I tried coca tea (no relation to cocaine, which is a
synthetic drug) Coca tea is supposed to help with the headaches,edema, etc., those kinds of things associated with taking your body to such a high altitude. It was good and I´m sure I´ll have it again!
Then we headed over to Tequille Island, which was once the home of the original peoples, then the Incas, then the Spanish, then it was used as a penal colony before it was finally turned over to the locals again. Oh ' wait - did I mention we are above 12,000ft? Ya, we are damn high and that is part of the reason the area is so famous. It is also the reason for my labored breathing and constant headaches. Oh well, who doesn´t suffer for their love? Which in my case is travel. Anyway, we made it to the top of the terraced hills (which are done for erosion control) and had a fantastic meal while watching traditional dances. We had fresh trout, white rice and basic bread, and it was fantastic. We then walked downhill to our boat, where I proceeded to snore like a freight train on the way home. I like to keep things classy.
Tonight we take
an overnight bus to Cusco, tomorrow is a bit of travel, a bit of relaxation in preparation for Macchu Picchu. I will post pics at home.
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