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Home Stay and Lake Titicaca

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Earlier this week Alex and I stayed with some local people on Lake Titicaca and lived like they do for the night. We left Puno early to travelled to Taquille, an Island in lake Titicaca. They are known as the best weavers in Peru, and have recently been told that they have to protect their weaving skills from modern techniques.
The boat ride to Taquille took 3 hours, when we arrived we had a small hike up to the "town" square. From here we wandered around and made our way to the "restuarant" When I say resturant I mean someones roof when they kept producing food, it was tasty, even if a little bizzare.
From here we had another small walk down 500 steps, good job our muscles had calmed down a little after the Inca Trail. We then boarded the boat and headed to the homestay.

When we arrived at the homestay we were met by the village band, its was all very pied piper. It was then very much like a year 7 PE lesson, you were chosen by the village president and matched up with your family. Thank goodness Alex and I werent last to be chosen. It turned out the small walk up the hill was actually more like a hike to the house we were to call home for the night. It was made all the more difficult by the 5 year old daughter from the home insisting on holding my hand. After depositing our bags in a very nice room it was then time for the obligitory football match. Needless to say I took role of cheerleader, along with most of the other girls. I was impressed when Alex was the second of the GAP people on the pitch, eager bever. Everyone did rather well given they were running around for over an hour at 4000m above sealevel. Gradually the sun started going down, so the girls took to executive decison, much to the boys annoyance, to call the game a draw.

It was then time to have dinner, before we were allowed we had to amuse the children of the family. There was a small boy aged 2, a girl as previously mentioned, 5, and an older boy who had us dumped on him as he understood very basic english. And as a 13 year old boy I imagine that he really could have thought of more interesting thing to do with his wednesday night than amuse two foreigners. Dinner Time!! We had soup to start then for the main dish we has pasta, potato and rice all in one bowl, there was so much even Alex couldnĀ“t finish it. Before dinner we had provided then with the presents that we brought them as a Thank you for having us. We took them rice, pasta, oil, salt and tinned peaches, for the children we took colouring books and pencils.

After dinner it was a mad rush to get dressed up in the local clothes for the Fiesta the village had planned. When the british arrived at Lake Titicaca the women adopted wearing the Bowler Hat, so I looked fetching in that, as well as 4 skirts and a jacket. Alex meanwhile had a rather attractive brown poncho, wolly hat and cow boy hat on. He was very pleased with the handbag he was also provided with. We were all made to dance like fools and dragged onto the dance floor by daughters and mothers alike. No-one was left out! This charade went on for 2 hours, by the end we were all ready to climb into bed, but we still had the uphill hike, only this time it was in the dark!

We were woken in the middle of the night by a mobile phone vibrating on the floor above us (not what you expect in a community where there is no running water). We were woken by the daughter, whose name we never did learn, at 6.45 with fried bread and a boiled egg for breakfast. It wasnt needed after the large meal the night before but we ate as much as we could. We were then walked down to the jetty where we were deposited by our "family" and got aboard the boat to head towards the floating islands of the Uros people.

The boat ride to the floating islands took an hour, which was productivly used topping up the tan. The islands were very very impressive, they are man made islands used from the roots of reed beds with the reeds placed on top, apparently they only last 25 years though. They are then anchored to the lake bed and houses, also made entirely of reeds, are placed onto the island. Very impressive.

From the islands it was back to Puno. Before we arrived in Puno we were advised that its the best place in Peru for Guinea Pig, a delicacy of the Incans, lets just say Alex didnt agree.

Anyway hope everyone is well, speak to you soon!
Sorry for the spelling mistakes, I havent proof read it, it took long enough to type. x

Posted by AandSTrip 11:27 Archived in Peru Tagged ecotourism

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