July 22-27th: First part of the Quishuarani Project…..
How do you cure a phobia of riding in a bus on windy mountain roads?
Well – you just simply do it over and over and get higher and higher on ever narrowing and steeper gravelly roads. Those of you who know me well will appreciate that this was a pretty tough aspect of the trip. I had not actually anticipated it and was it took me unawares. However the scenery was so incredibly breathtaking that after some intial annoying mini panic attacks, I soon settled into the experience and did my best to ignore the adrenaline cursing through my veins…..
Quishuarani is in the Lares area and is nestled in a valley at about 4200 metres above sea level. It is a place where time has stood still. The people speak Quechua and only the men speak some Spanish. Houses are made out of adobe (mud bricks), rocks and wood. People have sheep, llamas and alpacas and grow potatoes and corn. The weather was sunny and clear, but cold. At night the temperature dropped down between -5 to -10 degrees.
Please enjoy this slide show of our drive up the mountain to Quishuarani and our arrival and walk to the greenhouse built by Markham College in 2008. Mr Rafael Solomon, the project leader, was delighted to see the greenhouse still in good use. We were greeted by the ladies of the village selling their handicrafts. Children always came out to see us, some to stare, some to smile and some in hope of a game of football. Their beautiful faces belied their varying degrees of malnutrition and bellies full of parasites, as pointed out to us by Dr David, our accompanying physician from Cusco.
Please watch in full screen. Music: Tu Fotografía by Gian Marco……..