Mas Cuzco

Back in Peru’s cultural capital, we had no further touristic aspirations.  The most important thing we had planned was Machu Picchu, but with that done and our bodies still weary, we were really just counting down the days until we would be heading home.  Because we had to do something with the day, we went for a walk up to the top of the hill overlooking the town.  My body ached, and I grumbled about it the whole way before finally getting on board with the idea of exerting effort.  When we arrived to the park gate, we learned that it was necessary to buy some expensive tickets.  We hardly thought that was worth it, but somehow going by taxi bypassed the ticket gate.

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Much like in Rio, they have a large Cristo Blanco on a hill overlooking the city.  The view from up there was worth the effort, but I wouldn’t have felt too bad if I had just stayed in bed either.  We were able to distinguish a few landmarks: the central square, the airport, some ruins.  Compared to Machu Picchu these ruins weren’t that impressive, but they better exemplified the masonry skills that the Incan civilization possessed.  Again, these massive stones are all cut to fit perfectly, and stand yet today without the use of mortar.

IMG_20131221_131425We walked down the hill, back to the city center.  I was getting pretty hungry, and there were a few items on the McDonalds menu that I had left to try.  Peru’s exclusive offerings were impressive, and I made sure that I had tried all of them before I left.  For my main I went with the Pollo Crujiente al Plato, and got an Inca Cola to wash it down.  Part of what makes the Peruvian take on this restaurant superior are the array of sauces that they provided for my enjoyment.  I was very pleased.

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_20131221_150654Back at the hostel, the afternoon plan was to play some Risk.  There are very few situations where games like these can be played, just because they take a massive investment of time and are always the first thing to be scrapped when anything else comes up.  It seemed the planets had aligned and all was well, but fairly early into our play Parker was being so thoroughly destroyed by dad’s dice prowess that he had to raise the white flag.  Glad I was at least able to get this photo before everything came to a grinding halt, but I think you can see how things were going for him…

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That evening the hostel hosted a table tennis tournament.  There was some decent talent in the mix, and I lost in the second round to a cocky Bulgarian.  Perhaps as a form of retribution, Parker won the thing, earning him a free meal.  The evening gave way to a bit of a party.  We talked to a couple interesting characters, and Parker had fun talking to one in particular.  This was our last night in the country, and I was happy to stay up a bit to take care of some blog things, chat, and reflect on this whole adventure before passing out.  This was the social hub of the Pariwana Hostel.

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