it takes a long time to download photos so i may as well use the time to tell you more about my adventures. pardon the spelling and typos, these keyboards are hard to get used to and i haven´t figured out how to use spell check in english.
the place i am staying is ollantaytambo. it is a small rural town in the sacred valley. there are over 200 discovered ruins and possibly hundreds more buried by chakras (small farm plots). the giant andes surround ollantaytambo and when looking up from the center of town, there are two mountains slopes containing ruins. it is amazing to imagine how the incas built these ruins without machinery. some of the rocks in the walls are at least 10 feet by 10 feet and bigger. there are agricultural terraces built into the side of the mountain and irrigation systems that fed the crops with water from the mountain springs.
the inca buidlings are very mysterious though. no one really knows exactly what went on at these sites. some say machu picchu was a retreat of sorts, a very mystical place for inca elite. there are bath houses for the princesses - the chosen girls - to bath and make themselves beautiful for the inca men. many of the buildings have 3 doorways and 3 windows. but the doorways don´t always have openings which is intriguing. it is amazing how they built ruins in accordance with the moon and sunlight so that at certain times, such as solstice, the light shines directly on the eye of the llama in the side of the mountain. the views are spectacular, you can see some of the snow capped andes such as the veronicas (see photos). hovering over and protecting one of the major ollantaytambo ruins is the condor which represents heaven and is the messenger of the gods. the incas say that these sacred animals and the inca spirits are in the sides of the mountians.