Layman's Lens

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Archive for May 2011

Boutineer

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Hand made by the wedding party!

The groom wearing his boutineer.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 30, 2011 at 4:51 pm

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Aguas Calientes

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I'm surprised they don't realize people would stay longer if it were nicer. As it is, most travel guides recommend getting out as soon as possible.

This is the town nearest Machu Picchu. They get gads of tourists without even trying. The result is it’s very expensive and yet run-down.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 27, 2011 at 9:50 am

Posted in Peru

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Acid Plant

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We had a harrowing experience when we kept getting brushed against these plants while riding mules out of the canyon. Apparently no one told them how dangerous these plants are.

Our guide tore a leaf off this plant to show us the white sap inside and told us that it is extremely acidic and told us a story of a child who was bush-wacking and went blind as a result of getting this sap in his eyes.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 26, 2011 at 10:01 am

Posted in Peru

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Purses

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The colours in Peru were spectacular.

Purses on a door in Aguas Calientes.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 25, 2011 at 9:02 am

Posted in Peru

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Don’t stay at the Terrazas del Inca Hotel in Aguas Calientes

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It looked nice from the outside...

Tonya booked a room at the Terrazas del Inca hotel in Aguas Calientes and was told we would have a “…Matrimonial room with panoramic windows to the river Aguas Calientes” (matrimonial = double bed) with “WI-FI internet system”.

Here’s what we found when we got to our room:

Tonya is blurry because she was moving so fast to leave.

And this was our panoramic view of the river:

Not that the actual view to the river is all that spectacular...but you can't promise that and then get this...

Also, there was no wifi and it smelled funny.We told the front desk that this was not the room we had reserved, she said there was nothing they could do. So we left and went to another hotel up the hill (where we got lucky and got a beautiful room with a view of the river!).

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 24, 2011 at 9:02 am

Where Waldo?

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Click if you give up...

Tonya was sick for our visit to Machu Picchu so she spent most of her time sitting in the shade on one of the terraces. She’s wearing a bright blue jacket. Do you see her?

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 23, 2011 at 3:32 pm

Posted in Peru

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Happy Rapture Day

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For the rest of us...apocalypse party?

For those of you that will be moving on, have a good trip. We love you. If you live within a 5km radius, I can water your plants if you’d like. Sorry, but pets are too much responsibility for me.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 21, 2011 at 5:39 am

Posted in Peru

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Rooster

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Ear plugs were a blessing...

Peruvian roosters start cock-a-doodle-dooing around 2am (way too early) well before there’s even a hint of the sun.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 20, 2011 at 12:29 pm

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Window at Machu Picchu

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You can see why it was called 'the city in the clouds'.

More Inca stonework.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 19, 2011 at 10:37 am

Posted in Peru

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Niños Hotel

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They also happen to have an awesome wifi network...

We stayed at the Niños Hotel in Cuzco. The hotel was founded by a Dutch woman named Jolanda van den Berg.  When Jolanda visited Peru with her boyfriend in 1995, she was struck by the number of children
on the streets selling post cards and shining shoes. Six months after the trip she quit her job, sold her house, broke up with her boyfriend and moved to Peru with the goal of helping children. Now she runs 2
hotels that help provide medical/dental care along with two meals a day to 600 children. The rooms are named after some of her children (12 of whom she adopted). We stayed in Alan. Alan now works in the hotel restaurant as a cook. He prepared our dinner for us one day.

I wonder if the kids floss too...

I think one of her kids studying interior design was contracted to design the library.

She even build a library, a gymnasium and even a movie theater – still the only theater in Cuzco – for the kids.

Visiting this hotel was one of the highlights of our trip to Peru.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 18, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Posted in Peru

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Inca Stone Fitting

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It's a shame that the Spanish destroyed much of the Inca's creations...The Inca were experts at carving and fitting stones together. The fit was so good that no mortar was needed in the joints.

No one is certain how the Inca moved such large rocks but most likely they were rolled along on logs.Tonya standing next to the famous 12 sided stone that we tracked down in Cuzco. It’s a miracle was found it at all as it was poorly marked and down a seemingly random alley in Cuzco. After watching us wander around the alley for a while, a local finally pointed the stone out to us.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 17, 2011 at 9:04 am

Posted in Peru

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Peruvian Toilets

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One way to solve the eternal toilet seat up/down debate...

This is what you typically find when you need to use a toilet in Peru. No toilet seat and no toilet paper but there is a garbage can for disposing of your used TP because the plumbing in Peru can’t handle it.

If you’re lucky, sometimes there’s a TP dispenser outside the stall so you can collect some before entering the stall. Thanks to some great advice from Mo, we brought TP with us. We learned it’s also helpful to put your roll of toilet paper on a rope that you can slip around your neck so you don’t have to set it down.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 16, 2011 at 9:34 am

Posted in Peru, toilet

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Happy Easter

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There was a lot of singing and dancing that preceeded the sitting in front of the church...

We happened upon an Easter celebration in the small town of Cabanaconde in Peru on Easter Monday.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 15, 2011 at 1:24 pm

Posted in Peru

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Feeding Pigeons

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I'm surprised the kids aren't afraid of the swarm of pigeons they attract. I am.

Feeding pigeons is a favorite pastime for children in Peru.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 14, 2011 at 7:27 am

Posted in Peru

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Parrot

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He was very cheeky and kept eating anything he could get his beak on.

This is one of two parrots that lived at the hotel we stayed at in Huacachina.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 12, 2011 at 10:42 am

Posted in Peru

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Paracus Sunset

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Reality just doesn't cut it for me any more....

Tonya prefers the original version of this photo.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 11, 2011 at 9:38 am

Posted in Peru, sunset

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Cuzco Timelapse

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A short timelapse of the main square in Cuzco, Peru.

Music: Mr. Fortune by the Hitch Hikers (Happens to be the theme music for the Freakonomics podcast).

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 10, 2011 at 9:10 am

Posted in clouds, Peru, Timelapse

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Para-gliders

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For a considerable fee, they take you up for a 10 minute ride...

We sat and watched para-gliders takeoff and land from this ocean-side cliff in Lima.

From time to time they would go into, what appeared to be, uncontrolled death spirals...but pull out just in time...

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 9, 2011 at 10:07 am

Posted in Peru

Happy Mother’s Day

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Apparently Cupid is involved in Mother's Day in Peru.

Happy Mother’s day to all moms.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 8, 2011 at 9:58 am

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Llama

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We learned that the llamas were brought in because the tourists like them in their photos. It's too bad they're not natural...but they really are very photogenic.

A Llama at Machu Picchu.

Written by Tilak Dutta

May 7, 2011 at 11:15 pm

Posted in Peru

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