Friday, September 18, 2009
Making the most of civilization.
The problem with going to bed so early is that you get up way too early. This morning way too early was 4:30am. My body and brain decided I had had plenty of sleep but it was still dark enough that I could see the stars through the curtain. I tossed and turned for a few more hours until I could hear folks getting up and moving about. Not that I was in a hurry to get out of the warm toasty bed and out into the freezing morning air. The thought of a warm shower was a good thought but it was also a dream. The water heater had run out of gas. I’m glad we were leaving today.
After breakfast it was time to settle up. It took a good hour to figure out our bill even when Estancia showed it to me – she had the weirdest math I’d ever seen and I couldn’t figure out which of the thirty numbers on the sheet of paper was the total so I ended up writing it out myself and adding it up. 3 days for less than $100. Sure it was cheap but I was still glad to be heading back to the civilization of Copacabana. We grabbed our bags and headed into Yumani to conquer the dreaded 1000 Incan steps. We somehow managed to miss the turn off for the steps and instead found a dirt path that lead down and was much better on the knees than the 1000 steps would have been.
Siggy and Evelyn were already there as well as about 40 other gringos waiting for the boat. I could hear the dull murmur of discontent and when it came time to buy our tickets I understood why. The boat trip back was almost double the ride over – despite being a shorter trip. The discontent didn’t disappear when the boat showed up. This boat was small and the captain was trying to cram all of us and our luggage on it. 15 of us refused to get on and grudgingly they brought another boat over – although it was even smaller and soon filled to the brim. The smaller boats also meant smaller motors and the ride back took a full two hours. Not that I wanted the little boat to overexert itself and sink with all of us onboard. I was just grateful that we made it back to shore.
Back on shore we said goodbye to Siggy and Evelyn before heading to an internet café to get back in touch with the outside world. Then it was back to the hostel where the owner, Martin, welcomed us back like old friends. We were just as happy to see the comfy beds and warm showers and I almost hugged the room heater when I walked back into our room. We also decided to treat ourselves to some salad at the hostel restaurant – we were so vegetable deprived that the salads were gone in mere seconds. We didn’t care if they had been disinfected or not.
After no electricity for 3 days we made up for it by spending the rest of the day watching movies and spending time on our computer and PSP. And that night we treated ourselves to another pricey but oh-so-tasty meal once again. I had delicious stuffed trout in a creamy white wine and caper sauce with real mashed potatoes and more vegetables – I could even taste butter! And Adrian once again indulged in roast beef and gravy with potatoes and salad. (sorry Ayngelina no pictures we were too focused on eating) Dinner cost us more than our room (breaking my rule) but it was definitely worth it. Ah civilization - I will never take you for granted ever again. Although I’m sure I’ll soon find it funny that I considered Copacabana civilized.