Last adventures in Peru
06.11.2007 28 °C
Forgot to send this entry before starting with Bolivia. Oh well, you'll make sense of it all anyways.
Taquile was the last island visited on our Peruvian tour of Titicaca. It's famous for his textiles (apparently the best in all of Peru) and it is the MEN who make most of these. You can see them all over the island weaving and knitting with 4 needles (they make gorgeous hats and pouches for their coca leaves).
Like the other islands visited, this island has some rigid rules and regulations to follow. Dating back, apparently to pre-inca times. These rules govern their costume as well as their behaviour.
The women wear these long black shawls on their heads with pompoms on the end. The colour and size of the pompoms says if they are married, single or under 13. The men wear different hats, stating the same thing. And their belts, by the symbols and width also say a lot about the wearer. Really neat stuff!
When a boy hits adolescence he starts to carry small stones. If he likes a girl, he throws the stones at her, hitting different parts of her body. Once they get together, they fall in love very quickly (3-4 days, according to our guide). Then they move in with the bride's parents (I hope I'm not mistaking) for 5 years during which they must have at least 2 babies. This is the TEST. If they don't have babies, the woman is kicked off the island and is not worth marrying (I'm not kidding here). If they have their babies (before they get married here- how progressive)then they get married. The wedding is of course a fabulous period of festivities which lasts about a week and during which everyone has fun EXCEPT the bride and groom who must not even smile. This acknowledges that they understand the seriousness of what they are getting into ... Finally, they can move into their own house and start the circle all over again...
First view of the island from our boat-
Young girls (with small pompoms) in the main plaza. They look like widows...
And then, of course, we were immediately attacked by these young saleswomen prying us to buy bracelets. They work in teams, "attacking" you over and over again. And if you should buy 1 of these bracelets, then you're really in trouble because the others see you buying and then come over with their "compra me uno tambien!!!!". Ayayayayayay...
ONe of the many arches on the way down, back to the port-
Patsy meditating on the boat...
We spent the island tours with 2 wonderful boys from Mallorca, Spain. Really nice guys who Brel picked out because one of them had really long dreads and he couldn't stop staring and touching them. They invited us, on our return back to the city, to go check out one last Inca site. And so we went along, knowing that it was a FERTILITY site.
Here is the church attached to the site-
And Brel sitting happily on a "you know what"...
Basically women who can't conceive go there on the full moon and it works everytime.
But the most incredible part was the little "you know what" on top of the church. Hard to see but trust me it was there. Actually from a different angle you can clearly see 2 (1 disappeared as there used to be 3!). Another example of sincretismo? And the catholic church allowed that or did they not notice it? Too funny. I called this picture ZZ top.