Sooo.... It has definatley been a while since I wrote, and have gotten a few notes of concern so I will fit in as much as I can before we run off to a grand 24 hour bus ride.
The whole crew it here now. Jordan arrove bagless, which turned out to be a bit of a pain in the ass but after some work we managed to get it back. They forwarded it to Cuzco, which helped us out a lot, as we really didn't want to hang out in Puno for any longer than we had to. It is the dirtier, uglier brother of Copacabana, and is missing the esential soul of goodness, which is trout. And it's twice as expensive. So we did a bit of resting up, the boys got over their jet lag and we jumped on a bus to Cuzco.
We hung around Cuzco for a while, being hounded by the unlimited sunglass vendors and blanket sellers, who refuse to take no for an answer, and wondered why everything is in English, which is also the predominant language on the street. As much as I need them, I loathe tourist towns. We booked a tour up to Machu Picchu for the amazing price of 130 American, for a three day two night tour. We got really lucky with this, as Machu Picchu is amazingly expensive. The bus ride up there was absolutely insane, and a serious challenge to the overly publisized Death Road in Bolivia. We survived and didn't get a lame ass tshirt from it, though I did get a harsh case of car sickness and had to get the bus driver to pull over so I could lay on the sparingly cold grass an try not to vomit. I suceeded, though just barely.
This road was aboslutely insane, as was the driver, who though he knew the road well, was definately a road warrior and was one of those that had a lead foot until about 5 meters from a corner, and then slammed on the brakes. A sure cure for nausea..... It climbed high up into the mountains, raging along the road that had steep cliffs dropping down into green valley's. There were probably a hundred switchbacks, compelte 180 turns that allowed up to climb us such steep mountainsides, leaving me a quivering pile of nerves and illness. Before most blind corners the driver would let out a honk and flash his lights, notifying whatever other maniac was veering towards us on the other side. There were definatley a number of close calls.The one slightly redeeming factor was that it offered amazing views of the plummeting valley's below.
I made it without dying or hurling my body out the window, and we packed our stuff out and onto the train, which was quite fun. We all stuck our heads out the window taking in the view, and after a fairly short train ride arrove at Aguas Callientes, where we were shown to our Hostal by our tour guide. It was a pretty nice place, and we had some good, if exhausted, sleeps there. All in all it took us about 10 hours to get there. We ate our free dinner, set the alarm for 4 20am, and went to bed.
To be continued.....