|Pisac, Peru looking over the Sacred Valley|
Today I am feeling better about my drastic change in reality, at least mentally. My stomach is always a bit off and I have a slight upper respiratory issue, but so does everyone else here, so why complain. Anyways…over the weekend I had a chance to wander in the hills of Urubamba in hopes of hiking to the location of the white cross, which I already blogged about, so let’s get to the Incan archaeological sites. I’m not even sure I can explain what it feels like to stand among the ruins of what was once a massive empire. It’s an amazing experience that I feel fortunate to have been a part of, and the views of the Sacred Valley….spectacular, breathtaking, massive…so hard to describe the epic scenery that looks like it is coming straight from a fantasy movie. The anthropologist in me has been in high heaven to see both Pisac and Ollaytaytambo this weekend, but to hear about the history of the treatment of the Peruvian indigenous people and the fall of the Incan empire was a part of the tour that I can’t help but ponder with regard to the choices we make as humans in the name of religion, exploration and ownership in the world. Aside from my evolution of humanity rant, Pisac and Ollaytaytambo are small communities that are nestled in the Sacred Valley among the Andean mountains and sit on both sides of Urubamba, which is where I am currently living and are a must see for those visiting the Cusco region. The history and the pre-history is so rich at these sites and even for those not so interested in anthropology or history it is still a site like none other in which you can’t help but appreciate.
Upon returning from my archaeological adventure and my opportunity to enhance my cultural and historical understanding of the area I am temporarily living, the Public Health person realizes I am in the right place for an amazing global health learning experience, so today I am feeling better about my drastic change in reality. Of course I miss my home, my husband, my family, my fuzzies, and my friends, but I have learned and will constantly be learning what it’s like to go on a global health adventure and step out of my comfort zone. After a day of plowing a garden at a school and days of constructing clean burning ovens I am hoping that I am doing as much for the Sacred Valley communities as they have done for me, thus far.