Posted by: eeb | May 17, 2010

a day of firsts!

¡Hola! We have done so much since my last post! We’ve been doing lots of walking around, eating, and learning about Peru; it’s an amazing place with such a rich culture. I want to take pictures of everything–and I have a few to share with you today.

First, here’s are a few “firsts” I had today.

1. I went on my first run in Peru!

2. We had our first class!

3. I bought my first alpaca sweater!

Beth and I, and another girl named SJ went on a short run around 8 this morning. Cusco is so hilly! The altitude was very strong for about the first 5 or 10 minutes (although we were going uphill…), but then our breathing became more normal. It was so good to run again! Running uphill was worth it, too, because the view at the top, which we reached right at halfway, was spectacular. We could see the whole city! While we were running we received a lot of strange looks from the Peruvians–running is not very common–but others cheered for us: “¡bueno senoritas!”.

a view of Cusco

Our first class was great; our professor is so engaging. We began our U.S. Healthcare Policy course today, and the discussions were so interesting it didn’t even feel like class! We discussed three books today: Complications, which is written by a surgeon, and discusses problems and imperfections in surgery; Vaccinated, which chronicles the history of many of today’s mandatory vaccines; and The Healing of America, which provided an overview of health care systems in other countries. We’ve just scratched the surface—we have a lot to learn in three weeks!

a girl sleeping in the market

Finally, we made a trip to some of the mercados, or markets, in Cusco. The markets are packed with little stalls, each of which is stacked with Peruvian goods: alpaca sweaters, Peru soccer jerseys, blankets, hats, scarves, mittens, headbands, and trinkets. There is so much to look at, and the vendors are very eager to sell their goods to you. As soon as you ask how much something costs (“¿quanto soles?”), they begin their marketing pitch, showing you different colors of sweaters, holding them up for you to try on, and holding up a mirror for you to see how it looks. Hopefully, they will continue to drop their price throughout the pitch. I got a red alpaca sweater with a blue pattern on the sleeves and collar for only 32 soles, which is just over $11 (the exchange rate is 2.8 soles to $1). I also got a headband for 5 soles ($1.75).

Beth and me with our new sweaters!

Now we are going to grab dinner and work on our readings for tomorrow. Also, we just found out today that we are most likely going to Machu Picchu for the weekend!

Here are a couple of pictures I will leave you with until my next post (sorry there aren’t many but they take forever to upload)!

a view from the walk to the markets

sweet old couple



  1. Emma, Maybe I should have come with you and set up a Pinocchio’s stall…………..

  2. Im glad you didnt tell anybody on your Blog that the sweet old couple on the bench were your parents

  3. Emma, Great travel journal! Thanks so much sharing your adventures with us via this blog. Keep the posts and photos coming. Very interesting and beautiful! Really seems fabulous. The air looks so clean and bright.
    Aunt Elizabeth

    • Hi Aunt Lizzie,
      I’m glad you are enjoying my blog! I don’t have a lot of experience with blogging, but it has been a great way to keep in touch so far. The air is very different here, and once you get away from cars and traffic (Peru doesn’t have emission regulations), the air is so fresh. The food is too, I can’t get over how much stronger the flavors are here.
      xo, Emma

  4. EMMA! It looks like you are having a great time in Peru, the mountains look amazing from the plane and it sounds like running went well too! and im so happy they have plenty of avocado for ya to eat! 🙂 Cusco looks beautiful and so doyou guys in your sweaters! This is a great journal!!
    I hope you have a awesome time in Macchu Pichu, I know you will!!
    I miss you guys alot!!!!!

    • RACHEL! We are having fun, but we miss you too!

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