Saturday, August 1, 2009

Day 25 - Cusco, Sweet Cusco

Sure enough, we reached Cusco much later than expected....which was alright, because San Blas Plazoleta still had a room reserved for us. I took a long, hot shower. I appreciate bathing so much more now that I do it so much less.

Back in Cusco meant back to comfort, back to expensive, tourist-saturated everything. I didn´t do much during the day other than eat a double scooped ice cream cone and read while sitting in the sun for a few hours. Other than reading, two things amused us - little kids and dogs. Both don´t give a flying fart on what the world thinks of them. Rolling in the grass, chasing bobble-headed pigeons, wandering aimlessly...there´s nothing both kids or canines won´t do.

We showed up early at the dentist´s office. Elita, the dental assistant, was already there. As we waited for the dentist, she raved on about Bollywood. Ruth´s obsession was nothing compared to Elita´s fixation and knowledge about film stars, her favorite being Hrithik Roshan. Every movie I named, she had seen or at least heard of. We chatted for fifteen minutes until the dentist showed up. The procedure went painlessly. Nikhil didn´t wince, even when the dentist stuck a spiralled needle in the hole of his tooth. Not only needles, but many injections made it through the hole as well. That was as much as I could bear before the nauseating smell of sterility combined with the needles penetrating his mouth got to me. I spent the remainder of the hour perusing through Spanish fashion magazines, pitying the starving girls in outrageous clothing I would never wear. It baffles me, why these models leave their mouth partly open and eyes half closed. Try doing it. A bit awkward, don´t you think?

After a heavy breakfast, heavy lunch, and lots of bumming around we had a fairly late dinner. The Lonely Planet was a big disappointment in our search for a suitable eatery. Cafe Cultural Ritual, the first place we looked up, no longer existed. Moni´s sounded appealing, but after fifteen minutes of walking, it turns out the shutters were shut. El Encuentro was the fallback option, but a Closed sign was posted on its door when we got there. Hungry, tired, and frustrated at the guidebook, we tried one last stop. Victor Victoria was open, but overpriced. Thankfully, another branch of El Encuentro was open right next door. We rushed right in. Dinner consisted of a veggie version of a Peruvian dish, Chicharron. It was delicious, but I was sleep deprived and hence couldn´t fully enjoy it. As foreigners headed to bars and discos on this clear night, we were the party poopers. Sleep seemed so much more appealing than throwing wads of soles toward intoxication.

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