Wednesday, November 27, 2013

On the Road to Ollantaytambo

November 16, 2013
We loaded up in a van and headed to the sacred valley -- specifically Ollantaytambo our home for that night.  Once we climbed above Cusco, the road to Ollantaytambo was largely a high plateau studded with farms, framed with mountains as seen in the roadside shot.  

 Our first stop was Chinchero, the home of many of our Tinquay teachers. In fact we wandered into an area where we saw a familiar sight -- women sitting weaving just as we saw at Tinquay.  I loved the area near this shop with stone walkways and traditional style houses.

After more driving, we stopped at a small market where we got our first view of the sacred valley.

We still had a ways to go though and one more stop where we learned about the production and got a taste of chicha, corn beer (very low alcohol content).  We also met the resident's guinea pig stock (common in the Peruvian diet).   They also raised chickens and other more familiar food stock. 

Continuing our journey, we passed through Urubamba -- also the name of the river we followed from then on and arrived in Ollantaytambo in early afternoon.  
We first checked into our hotel.  You can see the horrible conditions we had to endure in the picture of the garden below our balcony where avocados and flowers flourished and also the view from our window.  

We all enjoyed our perfect afternoon walking, eating, taking pictures in the plaza and along the road to our hotel.  Ann and I had coffee on our way to the plaza then explored the ancient Inca walkways just off the plaza.  The main roads are modern, but the town has maintained the adjoining walkways linking other businesses and homes.
We got a particular chuckle from the sign we saw on one plaza shop.  Had to take a picture to share.


That night was filled with thunder, lightening, rain, and the sounds of the passing trains.  Oh yes, they passed literally steps outside the hotel door.  That made it easy to make our 5am train the next day!We even had time for eggs and fruit for breakfast.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Lynn's Peruvian Textile Adventure Continues

November 15 - No class for me today!  Planned it so I could see the sights of Cusco.  Had a great day!

First I wanted to show where we are staying.  
Hostel Santa Rosa de Lima.  It seems to be part of a convent.  There is a door on the second floor stairwell to separate us from the nun's quarters.  No elevators and we are on the 3rd floor at 11,100 ft altitude.  

 Resting along the assent is imperative.  Beautiful garden shown is right outside the door of the hostel.
 We then walk through the convent to the school court yard.  They had a Friday pageant that is pictured here.  

We have to knock or ring to get into the complex from the street

The last picture is the little kiosk where I would purchase my water each day since you cannot drink tap water here.


After finishing the pictures of Santa Rosa, I headed out to see what Lima had to offer.  First stop was the Museum for Machu Picchu. I could not take pictures there but spent a good hour reading and walking through the building.  They were also exhibiting the best entries from a recent contest of handwoven textile from villages across Peru.  All were stunning but it was easy to pick out the winner.  Unbelievable detail!
As I headed for San Blas, the art district, stumbled across the Coca Museum.  This is a big product in Peru and used extensively in the high altitudes to help acclimate.  Yes, it is the origin of cocaine, but it is highly concentrated before it gets to that stage.  It is used for tea, candy, & the leaves are chewed with a sweetener similarly to chewing tobacco.


It has also been found to have many nutrients helpful for workers putting long hours as you can see in the chart.

The next point of interest I wanted to capture for you was the Plaza De Armas and its Cathedrals  which the Spaniards built on top of the Inca temples.

The best Inca ruins are high above the city -- but how to get there?  Suddenly the answer appeared as I looked up to see a sightseeing bus a out ready to leave!

The bus took us all over the city passed more plazas and churches, mercado's (markets), the university, and up to the hill over looking Cusco where the White Jesus stands right next to the Inca ruins.

It was a beautiful view of the city.  A great way to spend my last day in Cusco!


Lynn Davis
Kiwi Knitting Company, LLC
2540 E. 6th St
Tucson AZ 85716

(520) 881-1319

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Lynn's Peruvian Textile Trip

First Day: This will be a little much but I am just now getting all set up. 

First day in Cusco after 17 hours travel.  Found the Starbucks.  This the view from their balcony showing the Plaza de Armas and beautiful mountains surrounding the city.
Second Day: We had to take it easy to adjust to the high altitude -- 11,100 feet.  But at about 4 PM, we participated in the opening parade down Qoricancha (street name) near the Center for Tradition Textiles of Cusco past the Plaza Dr Arm as to the Convention Center.  
The pictures show the colorful garments of the Peruvian participants.  

As you see - many are helping us learn new skills -- or at least try to learn them!
During these next few days we are attending lectures, weaving and knitting classes.  In each case, there are Peruvian teachers and an English helper/translator.  Back strap weaving was challenging but the chulla knitting class much more fun.  You'll be seeing more of this technique!


This picture is the colorful fountain in the courtyard of the convention center where classes and lectures occur.  Each day before class and after there are tables set up with refreshments and the various groups sell their beautiful textile goods in booths around the edges.
Tomorrow I will get a picture of the market place.
If you want to see even more check out Jim's blog