Friday, June 20, 2008

Closing the chapter

Hello hello all from St Paul, MN -

Yes, that's right...I have returned state-side. I can't say honestly that I am overjoyed to be home, but not because I don't love MN. It was truly incredibly hard to leave Peru, especially Cusco, and to say good-bye to all of the people who have come to hold a large place in my heart. As I transition back into my US life, I will be trying to find a way to weave them into my life here, as they have made quite an impact on me. For right now, let me at least put up some pictures of my last few weeks in Peru to finish up the story of my 'Year of Rest'...

This year has been an incredible one for me, filled with personal growth and exploration. I feel so lucky to have been able to take this year of rest from my medical career, and I could NOT have even thought about going away without the constant support from my wonderful family and friends. To you all, I say a heart-felt thank you. From the mountains of Peru to the corners of Patagonia I carried your support and love with me. I could not have gone on this journey without each of you. May you all continue your own explorations, as I will mine.

As my wonderful friends Lib and Benj say -

Always Go Farther!



Pictures - Huacachina and the beginning of Padres in Peru oasis 4 hours south of Lima
Quite a site - feel like you are in the African desert!
Seppe enjoying the sandy hill:)
Beginning of the Lares Trek with mom and dad...trekking poles are working well at 13,000 ft!
Cute Andean family passes us en route to their village.

More Lares trek

View of campsite #1...4300 meters above sea level (about 14,000 feet).
Adorable Andean boy watching us curiously...
The great gang! (L to R) mom, Gerson (the guide), dad, Shifi, and Ziv (a great couple from Isreal).
mom and dad ALMOST over our pass...
AT the pass...resting:)

More Lares trek #2

Andean woman and her weaving...she is the wife of one of our horse-drivers.
Her shy little son...
The dynamic 4-some, trekking along in the heat. (L to R) dad, Shifi, mom, and Ziv
me at Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu, Cusco, and then to Arequipa, Peru

Great view of Machu Picchu from the top of Wayna Picchu...
On top of Wayna Picchu with Gerson (our guide and a good friend of mine!)
Machu Picchu...pretty amazing site.
Back in Cusco, out to dinner one night at a friend's restaurant...nice hats!
Off to Arequipa - and the famous convent which housed weathy daughters in the 14th and 15th centuries. This is where they kept the girls IN SILENCE for 4 years when they first arrived at the convent. What a life.


mom and dad relaxing in a park in Arequipa
view from our hotel of the city center of Arequipa.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008!

Fitz Roy range...El Chalten, Arg
Admiring the view...on my 2-day trek with Angie and Aaron.
the gang...beautiful day we had!
and the next morning sunrise...pretty incredible
day hike in El Bolson, Arg. above the clouds!
Hello hello, all!

Ok, FINALLY I have found a great computer connection (thanks Aviva and Chris!) to upload some pics of the travels over the past month or so. Just a quick update of me now...I am in Cusco again, after doing some amazing traveling in Bolivia. Salt flats in southern B were out of this world, then met up with Seppe in La Paz. From there, to Coroico, met up with some friends working at an animal refuge, then off to Rurrenabaque (further into the jungle toward Brazil). We found a great hostel, relaxed for a day or so, then headed out on our own jungle adventure. QUITE an adventure...found a guy to take us on his little boat to a community 8 hours from town, but when we got there we found the people to be a bit inhospitable, but we had a bit of trouble finding a boat to bring us BACK to town. Luckily, we met an amazing couple, who cooked up fresh fish from the river. We helped them harvest their rice for the day, and fix their motor, at which time the four of us departed back up the river in the newly-fixed boat. We camped under our mosquito net on a beach overnight, then eventually got back to town., about 100 shades darker and full of stories. From there, we booked it back to Cusco, where we have been for the past few days.

I am very excited, as my parents are coming down to Cusco on monday for a few weeks of traveling. It should be grand! So here are some pics from the travels...