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Building a home

Today we had a full day working at the school at our various duties (for me, that meant English grades 5 & 6, then assisting with hygiene), and then we went to work on Hernan´s house. For those of you who are actually reading all of these entries, you might remember Hernan from the entry … Continue reading

The food in Peru, part 2

So maybe the idea of alpaca steaks, alpaca diane, and alpaca carpacchio was too much to endure. If so, perhaps you´ll find cuy—another regional favorite—more palatable, no? I took this photo outside of Pisac when we stopped at a traditional chicha house where the hostess not only had a whole pen full of cuy, but … Continue reading

A trip to Puno and Lake Titicaca

I just returned last night from a long weekend in Puno and Lake Titicaca with two other volunteers, Genelle and Claudine. It was a little vacation from vacation, if you will. A week ago a meteorite crash-landed outside the city of Puno and soon thereafter locals complained of headaches, nausea, and vomiting—ostensibly from gases emitted … Continue reading

A home visit

The other day we conducted our first home visit. A home visit is when the volunteers, along with Ginny and Iris (the organization´s social worker), visit a home in the Pumamarca village to check on their progress. These are typically families who have been (or are) in crisis for any number of reasons—poor health of … Continue reading

A home visit

The other day we conducted our first home visit. A home visit is when the volunteers, along with Ginny and Iris (the organization´s social worker), visit a home in the Pumamarca village to check on their progress. These are typically families who have been (or are) in crisis for any number of reasons—poor health of … Continue reading

When food poisoning isn’t merely food poisoning

Sometimes food poisoning isn´t merely food poisoning when it´s…well, you´ll see. After three days of illness, Ginny (our volunteer coordinator) took me and two other sick volunteers to see a doctor in Cuzco—someone the organization trusts and works with regularly. Dr. Victor works in a tiny, single-room, glass-fronted office between a hair salon and an … Continue reading

A trip to the Sacred Valley

It isn´t all about work here in Peru. In fact, our first full week contained plenty of sightseeing as we eased ourselves into being in Peru, being together as a group, acclimatizing to the altitude, and becoming accustomed to the Pumamarca school in general. We spent the last two days in the Sacred Valley, which … Continue reading

The food in peru, Part 1

Okay, we didn´t eat the exact one in the photo, but alpaca is a popular regional dish in the mountainous areas for obvious reasons: it´s what´s available. Despite the fact that the “cute factor” might make this meat unpalatable for us Westerners, I am here to say that it isn´t half bad. It has the … Continue reading

Getting into a routine in Pumamarca

Our comings and goings to the Pumamarca school are both exciting and bittersweet. When we arrive in our combi van, there are already children at the gate awaiting our arrival and welcoming us with hugs, kisses, and a resounding chorus of “hola amigos!” It feels wonderful to be welcomed this way and to know that … Continue reading

Exploring the Incan puma

Yesterday we spent a full day exploring the many Inca ruins that can be found in Cuzco. We started with a horseback ride from lower Sacsayhuaman to one of the sites at higher elevation where many Inca tunnels can be found. During the time of the Incas, the city of Cosqo (now Cuzco) was built … Continue reading

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