"One Gringa's Peru" Top 5 Page for this destination Peru by catalysta
Peru Travel Guide: 7,715 reviews and 20,455 photos
In 1981 I decided that it was high time I lived up to my expectations of myself, so I got on a plane and went to Peru for 8 weeks, no itinerary, no firm plan. Crazy gringa!
It changed me forever, this beautiful and poignant country. It can break your heart if you let it, and then reshape it in ways you never imagined.
Assembling these travel pages is something I've intended to do for a long time now, and VT has given me a simple and rewarding format in which to do it. But this trip was special. Looking at my old sketches and reading through my old trip journal reawakened memories, made me laugh and cry all over again.
The sketches are rough and really awful technically. But I'm so glad I saved them, and I decided to share them here anyway. I think they have a raw spontaneity that captured something of what I felt for those 8 amazing weeks, traveling in another world.
I've included excerpts from the journal as well, though I blush a bit to share those - was I ever really that young and serious? Sheesh!!!
I hope you pick up some idea of what the trip meant to me, and consider going there yourself. If you do, please don't see it "under glass" in a pre-packaged tour. Go out into the smaller villages, meet some of these wonderful generous-hearted people, mingle with the other travelers on the Gringo Trail, and let the metamorphosis happen to you.
FAIR WARNING! This page is not intended to be a normal VT page w/specific info, but rather a sampling of one person's experience. Let's face it, a lot has changed since I was there. For the best pages on Peru I've seen, check out richiecdisc's Travel Pages. They are beautifully written, accurate and comprehensive, with lovely photographs throughout. I also love Kevin & Andrea / AKTravellers' Machu Picchu page.
(FYI, I've decided to put most of the pics and text under one Tips section, so I can list them continuously, not in limited and broken up travelogues)
Una gringa soltara, what a target I was on the streets of Cuzco! I loved walking around, just feeling the uneven packed earth or cobbled stones of the narrow lanes beneath my feet...Seeing the fabled Inca stonework everywhere, stones hand-shaped and custom fitted, with no mortar, able to withstand major earthquakes because the stones could shift with the movement of the earth and not crumble.
But as a tall fair gringa, I had an entourage everywhere I went, and I was so self-conscious I could hardly talk, let alone sketch! So this was my first attempt at keeping a sketch diary, sitting in a restaurant on the Plaza De Armas in Cuzco, where the waiters protected me from my faithful followers, and drawing the wall because it didn't look back at me.
- Pros:Peru is raw and unique
- Cons:The poverty can be disconcerting
- In a nutshell:You just have to let it happen to you to understand
AFTER NOTE: At this point in my trip, I decided it was time to put the camera, sketch pad and journal away, and quit... more travel advice
"It is fascinating and somehow very satisfying to me to learn that for all their Christianization, Pacha Mama the earth... more travel advice
catalysta's Related Pages
Peru Travel Guide
Member Travel Pages
- "One Gringa's Peru"
- "The heart of America"
- "Roads less traveled in Peru"
- "Proud to be peruvian!"
- "Peru, my first taste of the Andes and the jungle"
- "Paul2001's Travels Through Peru"
- "And, now, ladies and gentlemen : mas abajo !"
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