The weather was still overcast this morning, but no rain. What a difference a day make to the views and the mood of the park. Yesterday in the clouds/fog, Machu Picchu seemed mysterious and mystical. Today, you could get the "photo-op" shots with clariy, but perhaps less mystical tone. I will try to share some photos from both my phone and my camera so you can perhaps sense the difference.
My knees did not make it all the way to the Sun Gate, but we did go beyond the Guard House and then came back. We were in the sanctuary from about 6:15 am until 8:30. A new train arrives every two hours and the people keep pouring in. We found a spot where could lean up against one of the terraces and just quietly view the Citadel for a few minutes. Otherwise, it was difficult to be alone and to still one's self enough to be present to the place. I found the surrounding mountains quite calm and strong.
So now we are lounging in the garden at the Sanctuary Lodge watching people hike to the Sun Gate. And there is now a piece of blue sky above us. This is the first real rest we have had since leaving home on the 21st. I am enjoying being still and not moving. And my old knees are really happy not climbing up or down one more step!
I am going to get up and walk the orchid garden soon. They say there are over 100 varieties of orchids!
Frank's take: i was highly impressed with archaelogical structure and design. From many viewpoints you could see the beauty of the Citadel.Although I have not been to most of the wonders of the world, I understand why Machu Picchu was named one of them in 2010 when it was also named one of the UNESCO Historical sites.
Given the right conditions (enough time and minimal people), I could HAVE a spiritaul experience here.
I have a funny Amazon story to share. Title: The day I became old. I remember Faith McDade saying she didn't feel old until people started to offer to help her. At the end of the hike in the jungle, a lovely South African family all rushed to give me a hand down a muddy bank back into the skiff!! So I told Frank "I think this is the day I became old!" But then a man from Miami who is in his 60s told his wife that I was a real trouper! All in the eyes of the beholder!