3 Mile High Club
After a 8 hour bus ride across the higher road in the world we arrived at lake Titicoka, 4000m above sea level. We do not have too much planned here. I mean, it´s cool and all, but after all, it is just a lake. If we had more time we could sail to some islands in the lake that are especially traditional (i.e., no roads or electricity). However, tomorrow we intend to vist an island made entirely of reeds but then spend the rest of the day slacking off. The day after we fly to the rain forest and then trek to a place to which there are no roads.
Yesterday we made a poor old man walk up a steep mountain to find us. We hired this gentleman to drive us all over. One of the stops was a salt refining area (salt pans) hanging on the side of a 1000 foot cliff. Thanks to my poor Spanish and general misunderstanding, we did not end up where our guide expected us. Eventually he found us on the trail.
He only wanted 150 soles for the whole day. That is about $50, for 9 hours of work, less gas and car maintenance. I have no idea how they earn enough to pay for, like, food. Taxi rides within cities run about $1 — anywhere in the city. Local produce and booze is likewise cheap. I have been fancying these fresh fruit drinks they offer everywhere. They literally jam juice into a juicer and fill up huge glasses for like $1.50.
Ican ruins are ridiculous. They build these stepped fields on the sides of sheer cliffs thousands of feet in the air. Those with fear of heights need not apply to be Incan. It is a veritable shame that the Spanish colonists went so out of their way to erase the Incan culture in attempts to usher in Chirstianity. They would purposefully deface and bury some structures and art, and use stones from others to build churches. Bah I say.