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Peru

Recent Blog Posts from Peru

Aug 18 - working for the Biologist from Ministry of Culture at Pikillacta   (published in Peru)

August 19, 2017 by   Comments(0)

First real day of rain - while not formally rainy season August gets about 5 days or so. Fridays are the volunteer days and we were introduced to the biologist at Pikillacta. Our task was to clear debris from the base of young trees that are part of a tree reforestation project that will also beautify Pikillacta. Other than the wet the work was dirty but not onerous. Coolest thing was when a scorpion came darting out from the underbrush of a tree I started(See pic) - high altitude or not I moved pretty fast to get out of the way. After some pics everyone was a bit more cautious with the cleaning. Led to me getting into a discussion with the supervisor - Dan- about whether there are scorpion iconography in Incan culture - a few google searches later - no, but there is in the Moche culture pre dating the Inca and from the North of Peru. It was a half day so with my free time I visited: Chocolate Museum, Catacombs of Templo de San Francisco, Casa de Garcilasco (regional history museum) and Museo Machu Pichu Casa Concha. Most didn't allow pictures but I'll post what I took. Some very interesting facts and artifacts. For Machu Pichu they've analysed the bones of the artisans at the Royal Palace ( what they have determined  Machu Pichu was) and concluded 65% of diet was corn supporting theory of it being a summer palace. Also saw a very neat demonstration of Incan musical instruments - pouring hugs were filled with corn beer and when titled made the sounds of the animals that the pouring container was made of.

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Aug 18 - working for the Biologist from Ministry of Culture at Pikillactahttps://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/kknibutat/read/437910/aug-18-working-for-the-biologist-from-ministry-of-culture-at-pikillacta
Aug 18 - working for the Biologist from Ministry of Culture at Pikillacta
 

Aug 17 - Volunteering at Machu Choquequirao Pujio   (published in Peru)

August 18, 2017 by   Comments(0)

We headed to Sacsayhuaman - where we did the walking tour last week. Freddie from the Ministry of Culture gave us our assignments - helping with 3 different excavations and weeding at the top of the complex (see pics) - we did shifts so everyone had time doing each. I started with the excavations and after helpiing haul muddy rocks out of the test pit for the retaining wall of the Incan terrace we continued with removing all the weeds and growth to reveal ansection of the retaining wall - kinda beat to see it unveiled but the work was hard - altitude is 200 M higher than Cusco and lots of dust from the grasses and roots. They discovered a number of artifac when digging the test pit - see pic of Incan whistle fragments. It was then up to the top of the complex - amazing views. Armed with a pair of garden shears our group spent the next several hours weeding the rocks. They are hopin g to develop this site as part of a new cir for tourists to both take some load off existing sites and create another source of revenue to support the archaeological sites. Headed into the city centre after working and visited the San Pedro Market to buy some snacks for Machu Pichu (recommended instead of taking time to buy over priced food at the site). Over 20k steps today - felt like they were all uphill. 

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Aug 17 - Volunteering at Machu Choquequirao Pujiohttps://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/kknibutat/read/437885/aug-17-volunteering-at-machu-choquequirao-pujio
Aug 17 - Volunteering at Machu Choquequirao Pujio
 

Aug 16 - getting "down" to digging   (published in Peru)

August 16, 2017 by   Comments(0)

Getting off the bus afforded an amazing reflective view of the mountain on the lake - see pic. After John and Dan(supervisor of all the volunteers) took some pictures of the dig with the first layer of soil removed we started to dig into the next "cap" or strata. It's quite an experience listening in stereo to 3 of the Italian volunteers talking away while Spanish can be heard from John/Dan and Adele sings on the iPhone of one of the DAmish volunteers - we also have volunteers from China/Japan/Germany/Canada/US/England. Our work involved carefully scraping away the soil looking for any artifacts and looking to level the square meter you were digging in. A lot of ceramics were found including part of a handle of a jug. One of the high school students found part of a jaw, with teeth of a small mammal. In addition to finding about a dozen pieces of pottery I was fortunate to find a polished quartz bead - considered unusual enough it got its own artifact bag. Speculation is it might have been some form of offering - often done before starting new construction by the Inca. Certainly made me feel like an archaeologist (in training)

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Aug 16 - getting "down" to digginghttps://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/kknibutat/read/437856/aug-16-getting-down-to-digging
Aug 16 - getting "down" to digging
 

Aug 15   (published in Peru)

August 16, 2017 by   Comments(0)

The six new volunteers joined today making for a big group and standing room only on the bus ride to Pikillacta. We started with a tour of the small museum a short distance from our dig site. Surprisingly they have 2 dinosaur skeletons on display here. One found at Pikillacta which used to be a huge lake/marsh in prehistoric times and one found in Cusco sent here for display( see pics).

The dig progressed with finishing the measurements and then everyone focusing on the removal of the top layer of soil. Found five pieces of ceramics and had a good intro to identification of ceramics with John at lunch. Making progress.

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Aug 15https://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/kknibutat/read/437831/aug-15
Aug 15
 

Week 2 at Pikillacta   (published in Peru)

August 15, 2017 by   Comments(0)

Each day we go to Pikillacta starts with a bus ride of about 30 min which usually includes at one of the stops a woman hopping on the bus to sell loaves of bread. At the site we haul all the excavation supplies to a "base camp" and set up a tent to provide some shade for breaks and lunch.

Today there were 6 of us as one of the volunteers got an infection from a thorn in the leg while at Machu Pichu on the weekend. We started with cleaning weeds and debris from around all of the rocks so that we could start the mapping of the location of each rock in great detail. With the debris cleared it was easier to see the potential outline of where 2 walls  of buildings might be. While not all the mapping was completed in certain sections we were able to start to carefully remove the earth around the parts that might be walls to see whether there is more evidence to support this - having just started we're not sure yet. I did find my first piece of ceramics - John expects we will find a fair bit. Back at it tomorrow when we are joined by 6 new volunteers.

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Week 2 at Pikillactahttps://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/kknibutat/read/437804/week-2-at-pikillacta
Week 2 at Pikillacta
 

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