Wednesday, September 1, 2010

High Adventure Part III

Our on-the-lake experience was a full day of adventure. The last stop was Taquille, a rocky, steep, terraced island. On the top was a restaurant with million dollar views of Peru and into Bolivia. The only way up was steep, and the climbing was difficult because of the altitude sickness some of us were still suffering. Dad and I started the climb but we were winded just climbing to the entrance. He knew I couldn't make it with my ankle, and he was really nauseated. So we went back to the boat. According to Ted and Margaret we missed the view of the trip. We didn't miss lunch however, a woman carrried our lunch of trout, rice, and chicken soup, all the way down those 500 steps. She visited while we ate and then carried the bowls and plates back up the five hundred steps to the restaurant at the top of Tequille.

This sign announced the sights of Taquille, including the restaurant. This was the begining of the hike to the top. Of course, the vendors were at the gate to sell warm water, Inca Cola, and Coke.

Emma, wearing my hat, returned to the boat about 20 minutes after Dad and I gave up. She said her chest and head hurt. So while her grandpa slept, she and I hung out together on the top of the boat. We both were thoroughly sunburned. Emma bought her own hat at a market the next day.

As I was walking back to the boat after taking some pictures, these colorful people were just coming from one of the boats. Many were vendors coming to sell their handiwork. Others may live on the island.

This young woman had several packs of soda wrapped up in a blanket. I couldn't imagine having to carry such a heavy load, but she carried the load down the 500 stone steps to the boat.

This man has two gas tanks on his back. He also came down the stone steps.

This fellow dressed like a pirate was crew on a tourist boat filled with North Americans. Actually, I heard some British English as well. We were really grateful to have a private boat and guide.

Our guide said this terracing was done by a people who came before the Inca.

These are houses on the edge of Lake Titicaca. The animals graze on the terraces behind the homes.

We were pulling away from the boat dock to go to the side of the island where the Jeffries would descend the stone stairs when I took this picture.

Ted, Kate, and Spencer are crossing the bridge which leads to the boat dock. Kate bounded down the steps like a little mountain goat.

After we left Sicuani, on the last day of our Puno tour, we drove through the bustling streets of Juliaca where we had landed two days before. It was dark when we landed. We noticed the taxis as we drove through the city, making our way into the countryside, so Margaret asked Felix if we could return to Juliaca long enough to take some pictures before leaving for the day's journey to Cusco. With all the stops to take pictures and to visit unplanned sites, we were two hours late getting into Cusco. Felix and the driver had to make the six-hour return trip that night because he was guiding German tourists on a kayaking adventure the next day.

This taxi driver couldn't have been any older than 16.

Taxis carry people, fruits and vegetables, etc.

I loved this Quechua woman's coordinated look. I tried to get her face but she wouldn't look at me.

The seats look comfortable, no? If we had time to hang around Juliaca, we'd have taken a ride. We saw families and mothers and school children being driven somewhere. There are no other kinds of taxis in Juliaca.

This is one view of a city street in the early morning sunshine. By mid day, the sun will be warm enough to be in short sleeves. In the morning and evenings it's quite cool. Juliaca is at 13,000 feet. We climbed to Puno.

From the highway above Juliaca, I shot this last view of Lake Titicaca. What an experience we had visiting Tequille, the familes of the Uros Islands, and seeing the pre-Inca terraces and the grazing animals on the many islands on the lake!

It's one thing to have to pass trucks, buses, and vans on a narrow way, but cows are difficult to pass. Like some drivers in Peru, they don't always look back to see what's behind them.

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