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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

On Uprisings, Stonings and good Coffee...

So, I am in Cusco in the busyiest and most touristy time of the year. Bummer.
There has a been a parade nearly every day since I´ve been here, and dancing and everything like that. By now i´m sick of it all because it means there are loads of people every where and that ¨gringo prices¨rise dramatically. (for example the first day I was here I could get a taxi for s/2 and now I can only get one for s/2.50 or 3).

Today was the most important day of this festival season, ¨Inti Rami.¨ This is an Incan festival where a huge parade starts at the plaza and makes its way to the Incan ruins near the city called, ¨Sacsaywaman¨(pronounced Sexy Woman, really). So my whole class attended it today. It was a bit much for me, too many people. We did see all the dancers and that, but when we got to Sacsaywaman, we couldn´t really see the performance, because you have to sit in the crowd or pay $80 to get a seat in the stadium.

Nevertheless, interesting things DID happen for us. We were sitting amongst the crowd when a stir began to rise. We were wondering why on earth people were getting so agitated and shouting? Turns out some people were trying to get through a police baracade to stand in the off-limit ruins where you could see the event more clearly. Apparently this area had been open the previous year, but the government made it off-limits this year. This first attempt was put down by the police, one by using their club! Again the crowd started to pump themselves up for second attempt at breaking through the lines... this time the crowd was very excited and everyone started rushing towards the rope... because there were so many people the police couldn´t keep them back and everyone broke through to stand in the ruins. Our teacher said we might as well join, so I participated in an uprising of the people! (my first, maybe not last).

Our new location didn´t really give us a better view, and we started to get pelted by rocks. (the people in the back wanted the people in the front to sit down, so that thought a good solution was to throw rocks at them. Apparently they can´t throw very well because we kept getting hit even though we weren´t in the front).

We left early, opting for something I greatly prefer... coffee! I had my FIRST GOOD CUP OF PERUVIAN COFFEE !!! this day must be recorded in history for me. I haven´t had a good cup of coffee in a month. So everything ended brilliantly!

4 comments:

Diane said...

great story! I can imagine in my head you telling the story. :)
I cant say i've ever been stoned before...(either meaning of that sentence is true), but you have! yikes.
oh, and comment on your previous post of non-refrigeration habits: my host mom in mexico would put food in the microwave to keep it warmer over night -rather than in the fridge. Gah! I dont know how to say "incubation" , nevermind, I just looked it up. can i say incubacion de las bacterias?!?! yum. I thank God everyday for my immune system!

Erik said...

Kaitlyn got stoned! Teehee. And here I thought Cusco was just the name of the snobby prince in Disney's "The Emperor's New Groove." Silly Peruvians, naming their city after a cartoon character.

I'm still in Washington, and today we're going hiking at a gorge and capping off the evening with a midnight viewing of Pixar's "Wall-E."

ginger said...

Oh to drink is human, to drink coffee divine!
Kaitlyn such a wonderful adventure! Can't wait to see all your picture! Love and miss you! Praying always! Ginger

Kaitlyn Cooper said...

Ýou´re right Ginger! I was feeling that my trip here was lacking a major component... COFFEE! So now i can be content and happy.

I really appreciate your prayers and can´t wait to see you!