So we got to our hotel last night and happily our luggage was already in our room for us! Happy day! Showers felt great but I took a second one today because my hair still felt dirty.
Kelsey was supposed to go today to Maras and Moray with our guide, David, from Peru Treks (don’t even get me started on the perceived shadiness of him pushing his services like that independent from Peru Treks, but whatever). He was supposed to pick her up at 9 a.m. and I planned to spend my day doing some handwashing and then visiting the Cathedral and Qoricancha and then shopping in the markets. Well, David never showed up. Understandably, Kelsey was disappointed and ticked off – I don’t blame her! So she ended up tagging along with me as I visted the Cathedral and Qoricancha. We got a guided tour of the Cathedral and the guide introduced us to St. Antonio, the patron saint of single women (allegedly). There were piles of little notes left by his sculpture and the guide told us we could leave a note too asking St. Antonio for a wish. Of course we did!
Qoricancha was interesting. Almost everyone we have talked to has told us that is a must-see but I didn’t really get why. The mix of the old Inca structure and the newer Spanish structure was interesting but it just didn’t seem all that impressive. Anyway, after that, we walked down to the end of the Avenida del Sol to visit the large market there and then stopped for lunch around 2:00 on the way back to the hotel (I would’ve liked to have kept shopping but I think I was boring Kelsey). At that point we ran into Dave, which turned out to be fortuitous because I had emailed him earlier about meeting us for dinner but I got his email wrong so he never got it. He was spending the rest of the day at the markets so after figuring out where to meet for dinner, he and I headed out to shop while Kelsey rested up at the hotel.
We hit a very local market first where we got some fresh squeezed orange-pineapple juice and then Dave gave me a tour of the market since he had been there a few times before. The main thing he wanted me to see were the cow snouts in the meat section – yes, actual cow snouts! I tried not to be too squeamish but I couldn’t help but giggle quite a bit. Dave wouldn’t let me take any pictures though – said I would’ve seemed too touristy. Like a 5’7″ blond girl walking through a market in Cusco doesn’t already look touristy??
We also went through the tourist markets looking for gifts to buy and then went to head back over to Avenida del Sol. On the way, we stopped in some local shops and got some good laughs over the mannequins, which all had huge boobs and butts and totally emphasized the butts by having them face outwards. I also managed to buy a really cute black & white winter coat for only 85 soles! (about $30). After the market, Dave headed back to his hotel for a nap and I visited another market on my way back to our hotel. We met back up at 7:30 at a restaurant called Kusikuy, which was recommended by one of my guidebooks. It apparently means “cute little guinea pig” in Quechua. We were practically the only people in the place, which seemed odd considering it was Friday night. We hung out until the place closed around 10 and then Kelsey headed home and Dave and I went to check out one of the :discotheques.” We got sucked into one right on the Plaza de Armas handing out coupons for a free drink, which turned out to be a very watered down rum & Coke. The bar was just kind of amusing – all American pop music and a mix of locals and tourists dancing. I think we hung out til midnight or so and then called it a night.