The day after the big Machu Picchu climb we were all worse for wear, and sometimes were a bit of a funny spectacle limping around and helping eachother out. We got kicked out of our room at 10, so just hung around eating breakfast until our guide returned with our Id's and train tickets. We were a little nervous about this fact as we were being seriously hounded by the hostal owners, who thought that our second night was not included in our tour, which it was. After some random spanish discussing and a call to the agent who sold us the tickets, who had no other vocal tone other than screaming, we were scott free, and our tickets showed up contrary to our doubts, just before noon. We were so glad to be pulling out of the nice but tourist extorting town of Aguas Callientes, on time, ID's in hand.
The drive down was not nearly as horrendous as the drive up, as I scored a shared front seat and just popped a gravol as soon as we took off. The only thing that slowed us down was a rock slide on the road, which found Orin, Jordan and Rylie pushing a rock flinging van across the rubble in sandals, as a bunch of fully shoed onlookers stood by. It was awesome. We arrove to Cuzco in the dark, and had a bit of a hard time trying to find a place to stay, but eventually found a cool attic dorm room, and a decent shower. I was somehow coerced into visiting Mcdonalds Cuzco, where you find some of the most educated in town manning the till with their bilingual skills. Salty as all hell, and leave you feeling like crap after. Quite tasty, really.
The next day we hopped on the afternoon bus, which was harder than it should be. There were probably 40 seperate bus companies in the station, and most of them have a dude that will run out yelling all their destinations, and trying to convince you to take their companies. Lots of old pictures of buses, taken when they were new, and exaggerations are thrown around, and you have to be able to discern which may be true. We found the cheapest and still decent company, and got on. It was a decent bus, but this was another twisting pass through the Andes, which is always extremely windy, and either straight up or down. Not sleep promoting, at all. Orin had a particularily terrible night, and when I fell asleep in the early morning, I was woken a couple hours later, being told that we missed the town, Pisco, so we decided just to keep on trucking, instead of backtracking an hour, and go to Lima, then a northern beach. We stopped in Lima for a couple hours, a little repulsed by all the pollution you saw hanging heavy in the air. Soon we were on a 5 hour bus to a beach.
We arrove at Casma around 8 at night, after a hefty run of buses. The Pan American is pretty dope, so the buses up the coast are quite pleasant. The scenery is not very enticing, as it is mostly dunes, but still pretty neat. Hungry as we were, we decided to head out to Tortugas, the beach near Casma, and get some food there. We called ahead to make reservations for a place that looked sweet, and caught a collectivo out. We arrove to find absolutly no life in this small town around the bay, and were really beginning to doubt our being able to find an open restaraunt. We were dropped off at our hostal, then discovered it was not the number we called, but the name. We had not reservation and it cost twice as much. Being the only place open in town we stayed... our car was gone.... but I still wonder what place we called and was expecting the four of us all night. hmm..We did manage to find a restaraunt that would feed us, and then off to bed, as their was nothing else to do.
The next day we packed our bags, and walked down the the main 'area', where the collectivos left from. There was about 3 or 4 vendors, all with some fruit and bread and snacks, and we bought 4 huge avocados, an onion, a tomatoe and some lime, and 12 buns, and went crazy. It was some of the best guac we've made the whole time, sitting on the edge of the beautiful bay, watching the pelicans tuck and fall into the water. We went back to Casma right after, and went and visted some ruins.. which were kind of lame, supposed to have pretty crazy brutal drawings of `evisceration´on the wall.... but none of us knew what that was and even after seeing the drawings it wasn't very clear... but there were lots of hornets and little bugs that left big bites. What we did see that was cool was the legendary hairless Peruvian hotdog, which is pretty bad ass looking and creates excessive body head, so it hot to the touch. Sweet. Also all four of us rode in a two man motorcart, me sitting on a metal bar beside the driver, ripping down the PanAmerican at 70, passing the highway cops with a wave.
That day we caught an awesome old muscle car to a nearby town, where we could get a cramped bus to our current haven, Huanchaco. Huanchacho is an amazing beach town, with some really great waves and some fantastic surfers. We've rented some boards and have put in a couple of really awesome days surfing. Orin seems to be quite adept to it, and is impressing us all. It has an amazing street meat scene, and I get shiskabobs and stuffed potatoes almost every day. There is also an out of this world bakery that is fatenning us up with apple pies, apple turnovers, and peach deliciousness. Our hostal is a really nice place with a rooftop that is very nice to hang out on. We have been here for a week now and it is a great place. We checked out the nearby ruins called Chan Chan, and they were really amazing. Getting a tour guide was really worth it, as he explained all the symbolism behind the art, which we never would have been able to figure out ourselves. Well... that sums it up. We are just taking it easy here, there have been many cheers, and beers and sun, and surf. We are so glad to be back at the beach, and I am hoping to get a tan worthy of travelling in South america for over 4 months!! haha.