When we planned our trip to Lake Titicaca, at 3812m it’s the highest navigable lake in the world, I wondered whether I’d be able to breathe. It turns out I can, although the thirty minute walk from the lake shore up to the main plaza on Taquile Island tested that!
There’s no transport on the island —the only option was to walk. It was steep. Very steep. and I took it slow, very slow.
The people, Taquilenos, are known for their handcrafts which are reputed to be amongst the finest in Peru, and for their collective approach to providing a sustainable economy based on tourism, farming and fishing.
Music, drumming, and voices over loud speakers wafted down the hill from the plaza. Perhaps the islanders were staging some sort of welcome for tourists, I thought. This notion didn’t exactly enthrall me. I’m not very keen on touristy events. I’d rather spend my time getting an idea of what life might actually be like for the people who live in the communities I visit. Nevertheless, curiosity kept me putting one foot in front of the other.
At the square, my chest heaving, my heart pounding, I took in the sight. It seemed as if the entire village had gathered together. And it wasn’t for the benefit of the tourists. They were celebrating the anniversary of the establishment of their community.
There were speeches, lots of them, occasionally the band struck up a tune. Meanwhile the children waited and waited for the adults to finish talking and for the fun to begin.
Sadly, we couldn’t stay for all of the celebration, lunch was waiting for us on the other side of the island and we had a boat to catch back to Puno
Tomorrow we move on to Bolivia, the seventh and last country in our journey through the Americas.
Word Press Photo Challenge: Edge