Friday, 5 June 2015

I started the trip with a dinky finger and I finished it too!!

Never let a dinky finger get in the way of a good trek

So, i´m coming to the end of the South American trip, not many could say this, but my left finger, middle one has been in a bandage most of the time, the times it hasn´t it should of.

This is quite obvious from the photos of a bandaged finger, but i guess it could be worse?

Better upstairs than downstairs?

I guess things could have been worse? Just look at the invisible man!

Its a story i wont forget in a hurry, and its all because i as a little bit too impatient. A few seconds of being impatient have cost me 6 months, interested?

So i hurt my nail in Germany, Kolon i´m sure, caught it in a door, it looked bad, but since the nail was cracked, the blood was out, no pain, looked worse than it was, a bit like myself, if you ever take the trouble to look at me above my waist level

A dinky finger, me and a German with a fake ID too at Machu Picchu

So, my friend Marissa comes to visit, i go on Antibiotics, we consult a pharmacist, we get anti-bacterial liquid, i can paint it on, Marissa painted it on, she wasntn´t fast enough, i paint it on over my finger, and that's when the problem started.

Marissa, looked shocked, just like this!!

Apparently the liquid was nail varnish, so that my nail wouldnt get infected, stupid!!

And things haven't looked good since, its a good job i haven't had to use my left middle finger for much, except keep it clear of water, this was a lesson i was to learn over and over again

Now you´d think sea water would be good, so i was in the sea in Brazil, oh the beaches, beaches, no!

One of the many girls I had to turn down, it was getting too dangerous to be out there!!

I was staying near an awesome lake in Uruguay (that was run by a Fu%$in  Bit%h), but I had to go for a swim, the finger looked fine, big mistake i got an ear infection too, luckily i got ear drops in quick and some algae out of my ear, lucky escape there!!

Que finger infection relapse...

The same is true for showers there is so much bacteria in the water, gettin your skin in it is a mistake!!

This sort of scene is enough to give me a relapse!!!

A vounteer female Italian doctor in Puno, 6 weeks ago told me i need to wash the finger in steralised water every day, thats the most important thing, i was wondering why no one told me that?

Obviously that where i went wrong, obviously!!!

Its been the same deal-e-o, on and off, it would appear humidity and booze isn´t a good combination if you have a skin infection, neither is pork and fish, in Lake Titicaca all i ate was trout with beer, it seemed at the time a good risk. The worst thing you can do!!

The latest episode of going to the rain forest is yet another, and it will be the last. The fever was a reminder, final message from the Pacha Mamma, and i was thinking about going to see my Shaman again when the fever was over, i realised i got a free session from the Pacha Mamma

The message was...
´Look after yourself, take the health seriously´
 Seriously? Me, ok, ok.

Let me tell you a story

Even an old woman asked me what happened to my finger, she then did a crude stabbing motion with her middle finger and said ´Chica?´

Good job i´m a guy, if i was a chick i would probably have had ten kids by now!!!

My life as a single mom?

It took me about five years to get to grips about being thirty, now at thirty eight, i will have to start getting serious, about getting serious, I´m getting old-er!!

Maybe i will see a doctor in Lima, to get my prostrate checked, i currently check it 20 times a day, you can never be too sure. Not that it has anything to do with a dinky finger I´m paranoid about, but you got to start somewhere, right?

I got a ´medical device´ to check it with too, so i´m kinda looking forward to it!!

A ´Love rider´, good name  for a ´medical device´, huh?

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Choquequirao trek, i had to go again (Part 2)

Only fifteen percent has been cleaned of Choquequirao

This is where the Inca priest would have a bath after being in in a little room for three days on Ahyuasca, communicating with the Pacha Mamma

Only six Kms left to go going up

Sunny and windy, a fine day for it

They expect three thousand people to be coming here every day when the Teleferica is going

Cuy, otherwise known as Guinea Pigs

Looks like something Irish

Coming back, was hell!!!

Our guide

Its not funny Kieran, what you might wonder?

Where the tour started and finished

Your listening to the streets...

Monday, 1 June 2015

Choquequirao trek, i had to go again

The Choquequirao Trek

I was in Pisac, it was pretty hard to leave, myself and Benjamin AKA monkey heard about a teleferica being planned to bring gringos to Choquequirao, now i´ve already been to Choquequirao before  and i like treking, its seemed like a message from the gods to go,

The only reason i was back in Pisac was to introduce Benjamine to a Shaman, i brought him to Loco, a very good guy!

After looking at what i posted six years ago from the last trek to Choquequirao, i´m not entirely sure i captured the moments, maybe there were none?

I forgot to blog about the Salkantay trek, here is the post from the last time

From what i remember there was an English guy, i remember him telling me when it came to food in South America, you need to:
  • Cook it or
  • Peal it or 
  • Leave it

Guinea pig Noir, leave him!!!!

The last time when we came back to Cusco after Choquequirao, there was a Guinea pig festival, lots of Guinea pigs being eaten, lots of drunk guys pissing everywhere, the whole place smelled of pee, ok? Are you with me, or do you need a picture?

The last guide didn't know much about the ruins, he was about 18 years young, this time the guide did know a little, something is always better than nothing.

Its all about the journey

The local guide Alfredo (a cool guy) price in Pisac was a little too high, so i went back to Cusco and booked the trip, then the locals price came down, but i was already paid up, so to cut a long story short, i was off!!

Monkey stayed behind, we had Nachos, a massage, said goodbye as he was getting his Inca hot stones massage.

I did get some good advice from the Pisac guide, i think his name might have been Antonio? Going to Choquequirao is about the journey, and i will say this, we had some good interesting people.

I offered coca leaves to ask permission to the spirits to climb the mountain, as per Alfresos advice, we had a ceramony with the guide at the bottom of the valley and up we went.
An Aymaran legend tells how Khono, the god of snow and storm, burned the land of all vegetation in a fit of anger. The only plant left was the coca plant. The hungry Aymaran people ate it, and discovered that coca leaves also helped them to endure the cold.
However, the spiritual significance of the coca leaf remains. Coca leaves are still used to give thanks for blessings or to make offerings to the gods. Farming communities gather together before starting work to share coca, drinks, and cigarettes. The owner of the farm pays homage to the ancestors and to Mother Earth by burying some of the coca in the ground. 
Finally, all give thanks for the gift and chew coca together. Coca leaves are offered to Mother Earth for safe travels and passages. Births, death, marriages and more are all solidified with rituals and/or exchanges involving coca leaves.

Some of us used our legs to get there, some opted for biblical epics, more about that later.

Doc Holiday

Close to the top, we met an old woman that ran a shop, i met a French guy that was staying there, he helped her the day before to kill a pig, she was frying it up when we got there

Our guide on the right, horse man on the left

Finally after getting up all the hills, we get to the camp ground

Top of my game?

The Incas brought water 30kms for this water feature for ceremonies, now due to landslides, the water no longer comes

A nice water feature, maybe you could have one for your garden?

The crew, and to be honest, i did like them all, how strange is that?

Only 15 percent of this place is cleaned

There are 15 small terraces here going down in this photo, my theory is that the Incas would trial crops out here and sit around like the actors in the photo

Did the Incas enjoy football too?

Actually they sacraficed black Llamas up there on the flat ground

Horses like views too, the teleferica will be coming from across the valley, its the future baby, even the horses can see it!!!

Good views

Myself and the Virgin Mary, like i said, some of us had legs, and we used them

Sanwiched between 4 mountains

I met this woman from Blackrock on the way back, just divorced after 30 odd years of marriage to an American she met outside the country club, Cork

Up Da Rebels

Actually the last night was pretty good, i was high from all the walking up the hills, it took me ages to calm down, i don't think will ever calm down!!

Shiny happy people?

Homeward bound

If the monkeys cant come to me, then the monkey must go to Manu

I always wanted one, introducing ´Marcus´ the Spider monkey

So, i was in Cusco, i think came back from the Choquequirao trek, it was excellent, to keep the energy going, like any good DJ, i was all positive energy, i needed an after party, i wanted to keep it going, so i went river rafting, after all my finger was all better, what could possibly go wrong?

So i went, the night before my doctor friend Bea told me to get antibiotics for it, as far as i was concerned, my life of prescription drugs was over, no so my friend, not so, never for me!!

There is no pause button for antibiotics!!!

Burial tombs for mummies, the locals used them as shelters, they even lit fires in them

So after coming back from rafting, thinking of Pizza, i decided somehow to do one more tour, i wanted to go mountain biking or bungee jumping, I talked to some guy, then another guy, i offered 800 soles for a 900 soles trip and got it for 820 soles, what was the trip? Manu national park

So after paying the money, the deal was pretty much sealed, i was off.

Now, it wasn't until two days later, i saw some tourists (to be known as ´Gringos´) floating down a fast flowing river, i realised i had river fever. This is why i felt the i was going crazy, the ultra conservative people on my trek were giving me strange looks!!

Trick or treat...

How did i know this? Well from pretty much the instant of getting into the van that morning, i wanted to get out, in fact i felt like i was going crazy, i told the people on the tour this too, i think they just thought it was an Irish thing?

We were going to see wild animals in the rain forest, and the biggest one was in the bus!!

As we left one of the conservative chicks on the bus told the guide
The monkey bit me
I shouted out the window of the bus

That wasn´t the monkey, it was me!

It was a bit like that, I wanted music, the guide didn't, it went on and on, a bit of an Mexican standoff!!

I love a good Mexican, can someone pass the Tabasco please?

My fellow tour group members were ultra conservative white people from Germany, Munich , have you heard of the place? I hear they like to have a few beers?

One of the first stops we made was to a wild life sanctuary, the animals were all my friends, i was in good company.

The bus driver was a really cool guy!!!

This nice volunteer from Germany, nice girl asked me...

´How did you get stuck with Germans on a tour?´  

Even she was surprised, I told her i wanted to go Bungee jumping, in fact i think i was a serial killer in my past life, oh the karma!!

Anyways i realised what was happening, my finger was reinfected, whatever chemicals in the river was driving me crazy, luckily i had antibiotics and took them before i went completely bonkers.

Ten percent of Perus GDP is cocaine and they dump all the chemicals in the rivers, and search all the tourist buses to make it look like they are doing something about it, when everyone all the way up to the President is getting bags of cash to look the other way, even the Wolly monkeys!!

Wolley monkey

My tour guide had wet band aids, two in fact, a well prepared company for bringing tourists into potentially dangerous places, luckily i met a guy from Denmark that gave me a roll of bandages and disinfectant wipes and saved the day for me

Denmark, i forgive you for the 600 years of raping and pillaging you did to us in Ireland

So after Benjamin from Austria telling me about natural antibiotics, Ginger, Lemon, Garlic, Chili, I got on them.

A cool dude

On one of the last nights, sweating my ass off, i though everyone else would be sweating, since it was tropical, no just me with a river fever, oh well, i snapped out of it.

I was chewing coca leaves like a Bolivian miner, what i didn{t know was the following...

Medicinally, coca leaves are used to boost energy, take away headaches, fatigue, thirst and is commonly used to prevent the symptoms of altitude sickness. It is common for travelers to be greeted at their hotels with a hot-cup of coca tea. 
In addition, many women chew leaves during child birth to speed the birth process along, induce strength and reduce pain.

The fever was over, a powerful message from the Pacha Mamma, to take more attention to my health, but its pretty hard to believe how something like an infection of a finger could go on and on and on for such along time, since December in fact, nearly fixed, then worse, over and over

I like to talk to...

But there you go, I used to have a theory of :
´If you go trekking, go with Germans, because they bring everything your supposed to bring´
Or maybe,
If you go to a wildlife park with people that want to take photos of wild animals from a distance, don't act like a monkey up close?
I don't know, i´m back on the meds, natural and pharmaceutical, with a hint of no booze!!

Cant do better than that now can I?

Ants are forever bringing bits of leaves back to feed a fungus, and they live on the fungus, not the leaves

San Pedro, the last time

A lesson learned before...

Benjamin says...

Time to go

Going , going...
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