Since my last post, I have not abandoned Tawantinsuyo, or, more precisely, what was once an empire — or country — before the Spanish conquistadors got hold of it. During this time, I have traversed jungles, deserts, volcanoes, canyons, ruins, cities, villages and native communities. I spent Christmas and the onset of the New Year in Peru, and even though these weren’t my first holidays in the southern hemisphere, I’m still amazed that two hemispheres utilize the same Christmas ornaments, despite the fact that it is winter in one and summer in the other.
My advice today has a nutritional slant to it. So, here I go: it is fundamental to eat as many nutritionally-balanced meals as possible to conserve all your strength and energy in order to do what you want and avoid becoming ill. On long bus rides, you normally eat whatever you can (bags of potato chips, sweet cookies, salted crackers). Regardless of how tempting a restaurant menu may seem, my suggestion is you focus on what’s nutritionally wisest, try something you normally don’t eat and or that which is most difficult for you to prepare on your own. Mind you: my suggestion is not absolute. If local culinary dishes are available, I try to order them. I believe it’s a way to sample the local fare. Another suggestion might be to cook your own food at the local hostel. Sometimes, it’s better for your pocket as well as your body to eat something you are familiar with and know how to prepare.
Since I visited northern Argentina, I’ve come to realize how much I love contrasts in cultures. Comparing customs, traditions, beliefs, politics, history and economy and learning from them, I feel is the best wasy to open your mind. That’s why I’ve been excited to discover new things about life during the Incan Empire and confirm that this culture remains very much live today.