Monday, September 19, 2011

Peru - Aguas Calientes - Day 3

On day 3 of our journey exploring Peru, we left Cusco by train and headed north for the small town of Aguas Clientes.  After a 4 hour train ride we arrived in Aguas Calientes in the early afternoon and had all day to explore.  This meant that after we checked into our hostel we simply wandered around, ate some food, and got some full body massages in a dark, musty room for $20 bucks a piece.  (The full body massage ended up being almost "full-body" a few times and afterwards I was informed that it slightly freaked out my new fianc√©. Oh well. It was an experience, right?...not least that's what I told him.)  Essentially we were wasting time as we had nothing planned until the next morning when we were to visit Machu Picchu.

During the entire Peru trip, this train station in Poroy was the coldest place we went.    Hence, the reason I am shivering.

 In Poroy (30 minutes from Cusco), about to get on the PeruRail train to Aguas Calientes.  I had to take my showers at night during this trip as I didn't pack a hair dryer and didn't want to walk out with wet hair in the morning.  I found that I had my "best" hair on this trip because after sleeping with it wet, in the morning, it was all piecey and had some body.  I don't take showers at night normally because it throws off my "schedule," so my hair has since returned to it's normal thin, limp self. :(

Our seats on the train.  For the most part, the transportation we used during this trip was pretty nice.  We had one incident with a 10-hour bus trip, but that is a later story. 

 Our train trip snacks and map!  Oh...and a ring shot. :)

 I found it very interesting that there were no billboards or free standing signs in any town that we went through in Peru.  Advertising was painted directly on people's homes (hopefully they received some compensation?).  The most common thing painted on homes, as seen above, was political advertisements.

Farmland on the way to Aguas Calientes.

Finally we made it to Aguas Calientes - a tiny little town nestled in a ravine, surrounded by mountains with a river flowing through the middle of town.  The town has no cars (only a handful of buses that go up to Machu Picchu), so at least we didn't have to worry about getting ran over.

The second you step off the train in Aguas Calientes there is a HUGE handicrafts market.  While this was only our 3rd day in Peru, the items for sale in this market were already familiar.  We saw the exact same things for sale in every single town we went to.  It got to be kind of disappointing after a while, because it was obvious that for the most part, the people selling these items didn't make them.  Everything had been mass produced.  That did help in one way: I pretty much didn't buy anything anywhere.

The "Aguas Calientes" or Hot Springs.  They had some pools and hot tubs built back behind me, but we didn't feel like swimming.

 Still suffering from altitude sickness on day 3, I just needed to sit and catch my breath sometimes.

Call me a simpleton, but these trash cans required too much thought for my little "altitude sickness" self to work out (or at least that's what I'll claim...).  I just held on to my trash and threw it out in the hostel. ><

 Like every Peruvian town we ventured to, Aguas Calientes was crawling with dawgs.  This lil' guy was sleepin' on a step.  Perhaps even weirder, none of the dogs we saw appeared to be starving.  They were all of a healthy weight (as I am a trained veterinarian and can eyeball a dog that is of a healthy weight?), so I guess somebody feeds them...

This is probably the only cat we caw on this trip.  He was cute, so we deemed it necessary to capture his picture.

 Trying to make the time pass, I bought a postcard and postage and wrote a note to my grandad, because I hoped he would get a kick out of receiving mail from South America.  Surprisingly, he received the postcard before we even got home and was quite tickled indeed.

The train runs straight through town.

 We came across one church in Aguas Calientes' Plaza de Armas.

 Another post from Peru featuring a photo of breastfeeding.  While there is nothing wrong with breastfeeding, of course, as an American raised in the South, I found it quite... interesting to see this poster just hanging out in the middle of town. (Because in Georgia this kind of thing would be deemed too risque to be shown in public.  "What if my child sees that?!"  Because it is unnatural for your child to see a boob?  Some people are so weird. Anyway, random rant over.)

Where dinner was had.

My pineapple chicken was served in a pineapple. Neat.  Also, with this one thing that I ordered, I received like 7 other little side dishes.  The variety of different "tastes" I got to experience in this one meal was pretty awesome.

Preview of next post featuring our Peru trip: Day 4 - Machu Picchu!

Hay little llama guy!

1 comment:

  1. That cat is sooo cute. Machu Picchu looks amazing.. I need to go there!


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