Friday, August 25, 2017

Arriving in the Cloud City in Peru

View of Cloud City from my tower
I was going to go to the next city South called Trujillo, but the French couple at the beach marked up my book to show me where to go and told me to go to the mountains to a small cloud city called Chachapoyas. In Quechua (the indigenous population before the Spaniards), it means cloudy.

My journey, like most people's journey into the Cloud City, was not easy. It was an 11 hour bus ride, and I only slept about 5 hours on it.

I could have gotten more sleep, but a man next to me played his music. I liked the Spanish music, but I was tired and didn't need to be awakened.

I told him to turn it off, because I didn't like it. He looked like he understood but kept it on.

I told the conductor on the bus, and the conductor told him he needed to turn it off because people were sleeping.

He still didn't. Then the conductor threatened to kick him off the bus, unless he did. He finally did. Then, he gave me a dirty look. I didn't acknowledge it and tried to fall back asleep, but I couldn't.

The morning light lit up the mountain road and streams and forest. It was beautiful.

Raining in Chachapoyas - the Cloud City.
I arrived at 07:00am in the morning. After finding a hotel, the first thing I did was went to the cafe for gringos and ordered a cappuccino. It tasted beautiful since I haven't had a proper coffee in awhile, and I savored all of it.

The first few days in the Cloud City, I found a hotel that put me up in a high tower, overlooking the city. It was a beautiful view of skyline, but the problem was I felt like I was a prisoner in a tower room. It had a very isolating feeling, and the hotel didn't seem to encourage guests to talk to each other. So, I was feeling lonely in the tower room. But I thought the experience good for bringing out my artistic thoughts and spirit and heart.

When I arrived, I texted my younger brother and told him that I made it to the Cloud City, and that there was some secret temple in the cloud forest where a wind monster lived. If you killed the wind monster, you would get a crystal that would bring you the wind power of the region. He didn't text back to my proposal that temples of dooms and magical crystals were in the region.

In my first few days in the Cloud City, I went to an Amazonian fusion restaurant. There, I ordered a cocktail made out of dried jungle ants. I drank it. It tasted chocolatey. I ate the ants too.

Me: Pointing at an ant in my cocktail
An ant cocktail

When I sent the photos of the ants to my friends, my white friends were generally rather grossed out. My Asian-Americans friends asked how it tasted? It was kind of bitter and crunchy. I had no problem eating it, but I wouldn't spend the money on it again.

At the same bar, I met a young English guy named Piers - who kind of looked like a hippy. We had coffee together at night. He said he went on a waterfall trip and that we should meet his friends on the trip.

We waited in front of the local church for his friend from Lima and a girl from Bolivia. Although it was sunny in the afternoon, it was raining really heavy. The water was pounding hard against the ground and roofs and splattering all over the floor.

We all went to the local bar. They were kind of boring. All of them, actually. And Piers got upset whenever I translated anything for him from Spanish to English, because he claimed he knew what the people were saying in Spanish. (It wasn't true though, because I could tell by the difficult vocabulary words that he couldn't.) I gave up on him. He told me about all the drugs he did and liked and would do again. It was boring for me to listen to them.

These people weren't that interesting for me. So, I went back to the hotel and slept.

After spending a few days in isolation in the tower though, feeling as a Rapunzel trapped in a tower, I had to leave. I packed my stuff and moved to the backpackers across the street.

It would be at the backpackers that I would meet a whole new set of interesting and uninteresting people from England, France, Germany, Italy, and Canada. Anyways, that's how I arrived into the Cloud City of Peru. There, a whole new journey would start for me.

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