The Machu Picchu Group needless to say, is back on USA terra firma after a wonderful, adventursesome, spectacular trip to one of the eight wonders of the world–Machu Picchu Peru.
The entire experience has been chronicled and discussed by numerous people who attended with us. This truly will be one of the excursions for the record books.
The trip began in the temperate confines of Utah and Texas. Our clothes were light and our attitudes were finally tuned to our anticipated trip. We landed in Lima Peru and suddenly it was apparent that the climate had dramatically changed to cold.
Those of us who had started the trip in shorts and t-shirts were anxious to find a room to change into warmer clothing.
The airport in Lima was teeming with tourists, business people, and locals. We navigated this dense crowd to find our connecting gates. Once aboard our connecting fight to Cusco Peru, everybody seemed excited and anticipating a shower, food, and some good social exchange between us on the trip and the locals.
Upon landing in Cusco, Christine Graham did a marvelous job connecting all of the various travelers to the guides and our local transportation to our hotels for the evening.
There were two groups–those who would participate in the 3-day hike on the Lares Trail, and those who would tour Cusco, Ollaytatanbo, and other ruins by bus and train.
Eventually, the entire group converged so that all of us could continue up to Machu Picchu together.
Looking back, there were tons of new ideas, sights, people, establishments, that we navigated. The greatest lesson was that all of us could survive in an environment where the ambient air was severely lacking.
Each of us had to deal with shortness of breath, with minimal effort all day long. The second greatest lesson learned was that we could communicate with the locals for our basic needs, even with poor language skills. By the time we finished, each of us had developed some rudimentary Spanish skills to better connect with what we needed and what they provided.
The third lesson learned that was paramount was how intimate we could become in such a short period of time. We developed a sense of trust, a sense of humor, and a feeling of real camaraderie before it was all done.
These excursions provide a great chance for all participants to interact at a very personal level. Let the Costa Rica games begin!