Well friends, we just finished our two day tour of island hopping on Lake Titicaca and it was quite impressive. For example, we took a boat ride to the “floating islands” where the Uros people, a small tribe, live(or so they say, we think it's just for tourism). The whole island is made up of interwoven totora reeds and they use these reeds to make everything from the islands themselves to little model boats to sell to tourists. The islands are pretty small consisting of maybe 5 or 6 reed houses with everyone selling stuff. We asked the tour guide where the people use the washroom and he mentioned that they use one side of the island to pee and crap and the other side for fresh water. But what the people don't know is that these are floating islands and so they move around depending on the direction of the wind. I would be careful of the drinking water if I were you.
Well friends, our next island was Isla Amantani where we stayed with a local family. You can tell that this island was made for tourism because they have special toilets for the gringos (real ones and not the stinky holes that the locals use) and a total separate sleeping quarter with clean blankets. That afternoon we played football with the locals and we got creamed of course. Us gringos were huffing and puffing because of the altitude and all the locals were laughing and us. What I don't get is that all the locals were playing in their dress shoes'.maybe that's the secret. Later on in the night we had a traditional fiesta where everyone got dressed up and looked pretty. They gave us some snazzy Peruvian toques and ponchos to wear for this festive occasion. We were 3 hot guys looking for some action! That night we showed the Peruvian girls what it meant to get funky. Actually it was weird because the girls were leading the guys but we finally caught on. And so we danced the night away. Quechua dance was a bit odd and quite plain actually. We had to add a bit of a Russian dance just to spice things up which everyone loved.
Well friends, the next day we hopped to Isla Taquile where we hiked to the other side of the island where the Uros people where doing their traditional dance in the plaza. They said it was a 40 min hike to the other side but us gringos did it in 20. All acclimatized – we are all ready for Macchu Picchu! The people were wearing their flamboyant traditional clothes and seemed to being playing the same songs but it was nice seeing them dance around in their costumes anyways. We took a 3 hr ferry ride back to Puno (sunbathing on the deck and getting a good tan) and will be taking an overnight bus to Cusco – yeah baby!!
When we made it to the island where we were going to spend the night, we were informed that there was a soccer game going on and we were to get a gringo team together to play the locals. This happens pretty much all the time and we always get beat. This was especially embarrassing this time though because we clearly didn’t have the advantage. These locals play every day and at 4000 meters I can make one strike and then I have to sit down.
After the soccer game we were told there was a fiesta going on that night. This was a little suspicious. I tried to find out whether or not they do this for the foreigners every night but I couldn’t get a straight answer. It was clear that the local island folks liked having us there so I planned to have a riot. Our host family dressed us up in traditional clothing (textile ponchos and tuques) and we were off. The locals were ready to get dancing right away and before I knew it, this 60 year old lady was working me to the max. This lady wouldn’t let go and she was hurting my arms. I tried to take the advantage by incorporating some high school jive moves. Later in some sort of line dance everyone had some good laughs when Kevin, Ryan and I started incorporating Irish jumping heel clicks and random Russian yelling.