Day 1- And so here I am, the end of my 1st day and what a day! As I write this I am somewhere over North America on my second of three flights listening to ´The Queen is Dead´ which LAN have so very kindly provided on their in-flight entertainment. The time? No idea. My ipod tells me it is 5.19am. I´ve now been up for 21 hours and only halfway through my journey. Already Ferndown and that lunchtime carvery seem so far away.
The 1st flight ran very smoothly but New York quite frankly was a nightmare. My connection to Peru began boarding at 11pm (EST) and by 10.45pm I was still in passport control from my previous flight. It involved a mad dash to collect and re-check in my bag, pass through customs amd security checks and then somehow gt to my terminal on the otherside of the airport. I fortunately made it and as I look around I notice how the two flights could not have been more different. From the New York bound businessman flying platinum club with American, I am now the solitary white westerner and having next to no idea what anybody is talking about. This flight however has addded a whole new realism to the trip though and I now can´t wait to step out into Peru.
Day 2- It´s now been 30 hours without sleep, so not the best time for sombody from LAN to say that my bags haven´t been transferred from New York, I try to be angry at the staff but quite frankly i´m too tired to give a s***. They explain it will be sent the next day. I have my doubts but I accept none the less. Finally after several more problems (if possible) i´m in the departure lounge for Cusco and finally nearly there.
As I fly into Cusco I realise that all the problems were wirth it. Descending through thick white cloud I catch my first glimpse of Cusco. A sprawling town surrounded by the most stunning scenery i´ve ever seen. None of the hundreds of pictures could have prepared me for this.
I taxi from the airport to where i´ll be staying. I don´t knopw where to look, there is so much going on and everything is so different to home. I arrive at the house, which beats all expectations, and after brief introductions with the family I collapse on my bed for a much needed sleep.
Day 3- I´m woken up 15 hours later by a women shouting, ´Desayuno´which from my limited knowledge of spanish I take to be breakfast. A quick breakfast and I´m rushed off to my project. The school i´ll be working in is for the poorer children, only has four classrooms and could quite comfortably fit into my house in Ferndown. The headteacher seems slightly worried at my lack of Spanish and so starting on Monday i´ll be working with the five year olds. Perfect Situation. I get the bus back form the school which is more like a mini-combi. It must be full to capacity but no, more amd more people get on. The complete lack of traffic laws in this country makes the trips that bit more exciting.
To my great surprise I am reunited with my bag and it feels like a huge weight has been lifted.
Day 5- Probably the best day so far. Had the wholde day free, so about lunchtime I headd for the Plaza de Arms for some food. After walking around the plaza several times I had still not decided what I wanted, when I started chatting to a Canadian women, who like myself was travelling alone. We decided to go get some pizza together. It was nice just to not sit alone at a meal and to freely talk in English. After the meal we parted ways and I went to explore more of Cusco. There was some sort of parade in the streets with peruvians all in traditional dress dancing through the streets. It was all so very stereotypical of Peru. Bright colours and quirky hats. It´´s another early night for me now, only 8.00pm and i´m still yet to eat an evening meal, School begins tomorrow. Wish me luck.