Sixteenth Hour

Still on the bus. Six more hours to go. We just stopped in a town called Abancay. We are at the bus terminal for a routine stop. I must say I’m not feeling 100 percent myself. Sinus issues coupled with the high altitude made for restless sleep. When I get to Cuzco I will try to get some real rest.
All and all, it’s still been an amazing journey crossing the Peruvian Andes. I lived in the Pacific Northwest of the United States for many years so I am not entirely unaccustomed to mountain ranges. But these Andes Mountains have been touched by the hands of God – or a higher power – if you prefer. Sitting on a hulking powerful bus and feeling it struggle to get to the top and squeeze through narrow passages is breathtaking. All the while your ears pop with the ascent and you struggle to catch your breath. I am now used to the altitude but every now and then the mountain tells me don’t get so cocky.
Last night a young woman on the bus was having a pretty rough time with the altitude. She was in tears. The bus attendant and some other passengers tried to comfort her. Not much you can do in the middle of nowhere. Tea – specifically coca tea – they say helps.
At this very moment we are back on the road. Making our way through snowcapped peaks. There is an amazing blue sky. A guy on the bus is listening to his iPod and singing out loud and very badly. Sounds like a dying crow. Twenty-two hour bus trips bring out the best and worst in us. Hey, I will take the off key singer anyday over the phone yapper.
By the way, I’m filing these on my BlackBerry. Not easy on the fingers but hey 🙂

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