June 4, 2018 – Day 11
We went for a two-hours trip to a village near Cusco. It was the perfect time to take a break and have some “alone time” and just listen to some music on the road to Chinchero. The way to Chinchero was unbelievably amazing. It was one of the beautiful natural sights I have ever seen in my life. Sitting at the back of the bus watching the outside view of Peru’s countryside through the windows, was a joy! Even though the outside view was breath taking, I also had some great conversations on the way with the people next to me at the bus! As I always believe, it’s the people you we are with not the places you visit that makes you enjoy your time on a trip!
At Chinchero, I met some lovely ladies who took us for a short tour to their garden, where they grow several kinds of herbs. They taught us about medicinal herbs. For example, some herbs were used by women in Peru as an old method for birth control, other herbs were used for indigestion. They boil the leaves of the plant and drink it as tea. Coming from a middle eastern background, I was familiar with some of the herbs because I grew up seeing my grandmother and my mother drinking herbal tea all the time. I specially remember my mother giving us, me and my sisters, herbal tea when having stomachaches, PMS pain or bloating. Yet, I was surprised by the other benefits of these plants, I wasn’t aware of before!
After the tour to the garden, we went back to the building to see how they make woolen textiles. They started by shearing llama’s fleece. Then, they rub it on a wooden piece in a bowl of soapy water. After that, they brush the wool on a square board that contains sharpened and pointed teeth at one of the ends. Eventually it gets twisted; transforming it into thin ropes. By then, the woolen yarn process should be done, unless they wanted to dye it and make different colors of it. If they wanted to make many colors of woolen yarn, they dip the yarn in bowls of water mixed with different types of flowers, vegetables or plants.