The Streets of Cusco

Tomorrow is the last full day of our trip. I’m feeling sad about it ending.

More than half of our group will be going home—or on to other travels—on Tuesday, but eight of us will be continuing on to the Amazon, where there will be limited solar powered electricity and no Wi-Fi, hence no blogging. If I write it will be with a pen on a paper notebook.

Today, after writing group, was a day to explore Cusco, and for many of us, to shop. I finally found the wrap around shawl of my dreams.

Tomorrow morning, we’ll have our last writing group and a group of us will tour a local archeological site in the afternoon. Then back for a closing circle and our last dinner together.

I don’t know if I’ll be able to squeeze in any blogging, but here’s just a small sampling of what I encountered on the streets of Cusco, all within ten minutes of our hotel.

Narrow cobblestone streets.

This sidewalk is definitely single file only and the cars don’t stop for pedestrians.

Street at night.

Art and textiles everywhere.

Our neighborhood, San Blas, is definitely big on restaurants and shopping. I know our group helped the economy here today.

Pan pipes!

Street sign in Quechua.

I toured a museum all about coca.

These leaves, chewed daily by Peruvians and widely everywhere give energy and suppress appetite. They’re a Class A felony in the United States. I haven’t tried any yet because they’re contraindicated with the altitude medicine I’m taking. But I plan to try them in the Amazon. Then I’ll be off the altitude medicine and on the malaria medicine.

Lots of coca products for sale.

Self-explanatory.

This would be a fun place to study Spanish.

Lots of people and signs out hawking jewelry, restaurants, massages and more.

Colors.

I’d like to see this mountain. Wouldn’t you?

Cusco traffic jam.

This is an original wall made by the Incans. No mortar, no cement. Just blocks for perfectly together. This one block, the one in the center, has ten sides.

And this one has twelve sides. What a miracle of engineering.

Pigeon near the Incan wall.

Ancient and modern rub up against each other. This is the same ancient wall.

This guy greeted us ever time we came back to our hotel.

And so did this lovely display of medicinal teas in the lobby.

Yum.

Isn’t this the sweetest little tea bag you’ve ever seen?

And coca leaves, there for the taking next to the medicinal healing teas.

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