Looking Forward To Pecos

Pecos River © Twyatt 2012Pecos View © Twyatt 2012Pecos Angel © Twyatt 2012

A few have asked about where I am going and what I am doing in June?  Here’s the link to where I will be, Our Lady of Guadalupe Abbey in Pecos, New Mexico, plus a few pictures from when I was there in 2012.

I will be attending the Pecos Benedictine Charismatic School for Spiritual Direction including classes, group activities, meeting with an assigned Spiritual Director, prayers and quiet time for study and personal reflection. Continue reading Looking Forward To Pecos

Off The Grid in Ollantaytambo

I wish you could see what Les and I got to see and experience today while off the beaten path in Ollantaytambo.

Ollantaytambo Main Street © Twyatt 2014Ollantaytambo Doorway © Twyatt 2014Ollantaytambo Bougainvillea © Twyatt 2014

When we drove through the dusty, congested entrance last night, I thought, “Seriously, people live here?”  I could barely contain my urge to snicker and say, “Haven’t you got anything newer than this?”  I don’t think anyone else would have seen the Bug Signs Ollantaytambo Peru © Twyatt 2014humor behind my concern for our accommodations.  But, they were good despite the odd radiated bug-like symbols painted on all four walls of our room.  I think they may be Quechua for “roaches beware”.

This was to be our first day of being without Yure; we set out with our off-the-guided-grid attitude, and little tiny map without street names, to discover the once capital city and oldest continuously inhabited dwellings in South America.  And we made it as far as the nearest coffee cafe at the corner of the plaza. Continue reading Off The Grid in Ollantaytambo

Finding Waldo in Peru

Ollantaytambo Peru © Twyatt 2014Terraces of Pumatallis Ollantaytambo PeruWiracocha Image on Pinkuylluna Ollantaytambo Peru © Twyatt 2014

We arrived in Ollantaytambo, a still inhabited city that once served as temporary capital for Manco Inca (leader of the native resistance against the Spanish conquistadors).  The elevation is 9,160′ above sea level and the stone steps of the main Inca ceremonial center seem to be growing steeper and more narrow, so I turn around and wait at the base of Araqhama while Les and Yure carry on to the top. Continue reading Finding Waldo in Peru

Lessons at Pisac

Pisac Ruins Peru © Twyatt 2014

We make several stops at the entrance to the Valley including more Incan ruins known as Inca Písac.  We turn to the opposite side of this site and there, in the mountain are rows and rows of holes. I’m astounded.  This was the vision I saw this morning and drew (again hurriedly and crudely) on my paper table mat before leaving for the day.

Holes Drawing Cusco Peru © Twyatt 2014Mountainside Pisac Peru © Twyatt 2014Mountain Tombs Peru © Twyatt 2014

Yure goes on to explain the mountainside pockmarks as evidence of Spanish tomb robbers extracting gold and silver from the final resting places of the Incas.  These were the history lessons come alive, but there were other messages for me on that particular spot on the mountain. Continue reading Lessons at Pisac

The Colors of Peru

Llama Peru © Twyatt 2014Colors of Peru © Twyatt 2014Weaving at Farm Peru © Twyatt 2014

At breakfast I quickly sketch a few notes of dreams and prayers, then we leave Cusco to visit Cochahuasi, an animal sanctuary and rescue farm for Alpacas, Llamas, Macaws, Parakeets and two Condors (they fly overhead with a wingspan of 10′).  We see coats of alpacas transformed by nature’s dyes and woman’s skill, and we visit Grupo Esmeralde, where tourist like us fall under the trance of beautifully crafted alpaca and baby alpaca sweaters and hats.

Sacred Valley Peru First Look © Twyatt 2014Terraces near Ollantaytambo Peru © Twyatt 2014Quinoa Farming Peru © Twyatt 2014

With credit card safely stowed, our guide Yure drives us on for our first look of the Sacred Valley of the Incas – a craddle made by the Urubama River also known as Willkanuta River (Aymara, “house of the sun”) or Willkamayu (Quechua). We are both moved by the expanse and beauty of this rich and generous relief in the highland mountains of Peru, and then drive on through the small villages – passing terraces and fields of hard-working farmers of corn, and potatoes, Amaranth and Quinoa.

It May Not Look Like Much

Inti Drawing Cusco Peru © Twyatt 2014Inti Qorikancha (Temple of the Sun, Cusco Peru) © Twyatt 2014Pachamama Drawing Cuscos Peru © Twyatt 2014

I slept and dreamt until the twilight between sleep and waking moments when I woke up with two visuals that I hurriedly and crudely drew in the first pages of my new travel journal.  I fought back the familiar, critical voice saying that “I’m a lousy drawer” long enough to scratch out the barest of nods to what I was seeing in my mind’s eye.  

Then, a quick breakfast buffet and we set out into the day with Yure, and walking to The Qorikancha – The Sun Temple also known as Inti Kancha or Inti Wasi (which is Quechua, the native language of the Incas, for “sun  house”). Continue reading It May Not Look Like Much