**I am writing these posts quite a bit after the fact, now that I am home. This post is about April 15th and 16th.
We got up really early (3:00 AM) on Wednesday the 16th to board the bus for a very long bus ride on a very windy road to the place where we would be departing from for the trek (we were going to do 2 days on the Lares Trail, which is very remote and high in the mountains, and then the third day on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu). When we woke up, I was feeling that great, but thought it was probably just from getting so little sleep and it being so early in the morning. The bus ride was rough and at one point, we had to stop for another girl in our group to throw up on the side of the road. The road was extremely windy and bumpy, which certainly didn’t help with things. As we got closer to our destination, I was feeling even worse than I had originally and was rather nauseous, but I thought maybe I was just getting really carsick. When we arrived at Lares, the head of the trail, I knew that I needed to inform the professors that I wasn’t feeling well. They, along with our guide, Daniel, decided that it would be really unwise for me (and the other girl) to do the trek, as it is at a very high elevation (up to 15,000 feet altitude) and a very difficult hike. I really wanted to try, but I wasn’t really given the choice. We joined the rest of the group for breakfast, and then the two of us drove back to Cusco with the bus driver (it really wasn’t fun to drive those roads again, but we both made it). The driver was really nice and stopped a couple of times, once so that we could take pictures at a scenic overlook and once so we could squat on the side of the road, since it would be a long time until we hit a town again (I’m pretty sure a man on a motorcycle passing by got a pretty nice view of that- there wasn’t much coverage). When we arrived back in Cusco, we returned to the same house we had been staying in and proceeded to sleep the rest of the afternoon. What I thought was just carsickness was apparently some sort of stomach bug, and the two of us were both in pretty bad shape the next day and a half. In the late afternoon, we figured we should probably go to the plaza and find some food, so we made the 2-mile walk there, then proceeded to sit idly in a smaller plaza for over an hour, as we were both too weak to do anything else. After our hour long rest, we were able to get some food (which we luckily kept down), then very slowly head back to the house, where we immediately went to sleep.
We were served breakfast in the house on Thursday morning, then went right back to bed. Around noon, I tried to take a shower, and realized I still wasn’t feeling to great, so I rested some more. I was able to do some of my assignments for the coming week’s literature class and slept some more until late afternoon. By around 4:00, the two of us were both feeling quite a bit better and again made the trek to the plaza to get dinner. We ate at Jack’s Cafe (really good food!), then walked briefly around the plaza before returning to the house and packing for the 3rd and final day of the trek (the Inca Trail), for which we would be able to join the rest of the group. Knowing we needed to get up really early again the next morning, we went to sleep pretty early.