Life’s Peaks and Valleys…

Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu

It is truly amazing how quickly a vacation high can dissipate.

We just walked into our New York City apartment and for the 8th time, our bedroom has sustained water damage from our irresponsible upstairs neighbor.

Toby, On The Job…deja vu all over again. We landed at 7:30 am after an overnight haul from Peru, walked in, snapped photos of the damage to catalog in the photo album side by side with Machu Picchu serenity, assessed the damage and filed a claim…welcome home, damn it.

I will dig deep for my Machu Picchu spirituality and make a full report…


This is not a paid announcement…you MUST visit Machu Picchu once in your lifetime. It is a moment in time like nothing else you will experience.

Every aspect of the journey is analogous to Christmas morning, opening up beautifully wrapped and brightly colored presents.

Thee are 3 options for the train trip from the Sacred Valley to Aguas Calientes, the town at the foothills of the Andes. The Hiram Bingham is crazy expensive. The local train is fine. We chose the Dome train which afforded spectacular views during the delightful 90 minute journey. Snacks were provided. We sat across from a lovely young couple who reside in Lima and Chile.

Aguas Calientes Delivery Guys
Aguas Calientes Delivery Guys

Interesting fact…the guys depicted run the produce, building materials, supplies up the hill on the carts. Each one counts to 3 in spanish and then runs straight up a steep hill to deliver the merchandise.

Our hotel, the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel was impressive, set in an eco center, re-creating the microclimate of the rainforest where they cultivate orchids, plants, produce their own tea and have a center to save the white speckled bear from extinction.

The bus trip up the winding road to MP was an E ticket Disneyland ride. It is incredible how organized and orderly everything is done. The 30 minute trip up to Machu Picchu by coach is a series of hairpin turns on a narrow road surrounded by the majestic Andes.

You arrive and disembark and form lines to enter. The personnel are perched atop their thrones at the booth and check your name off on their latest model computers. If the Incans could see the process in the 21st century, would they be impressed?! If you are aware after entering, you can obtain a groovy official MP passport stamp.

Top Of Machu Picchu
Hairpin Turns To Machu Picchu

You begin the journey uphill and when you have your initial viewing, it is absolutely breathtaking. The scope of the work, nestled on a mountaintop surrounded by other soaring peaks…indescribable, breathtaking, exhilarating, not to be missed.

The magnificent Inca citadel rests on a saddle between 2 forested peaks. Machu Picchu is well preserved and largely intact. With a bit of imagination you are transported to the city at the height of the Inca empire when the temples, terraces, houses, palaces, towers, fountains and staircases were home to a 1000 Incans.

For many centuries the site was hidden under vegetation, abandoned for unknown reasons. The American explorer, Hiram Bingham, stumbled upon the citadel in 1911.

Exploration on the first day was comprehensive. Day 2 we hiked to the Intipunku Sun Gate. I  was off my game having awakened during the night with a virus or early stage malaria, but I allowed my body to e invaded by Incan discipline and pushed my way to the very top…victory!

A highlight was finding a secluded terraced area and just basking in the glory of MP for a long while.

Seriously, I was spiritually affected by the aura of Machu Picchu.

Train Trip From Sacred Valley to Aguas Calientes
Train Trip From Sacred Valley to Aguas Calientes

The train ride back to Sacred Valley was a trip. We were treated to snacks, a high end fashion show and we hung we the train jester.

Train Jester
Train Jester

More Peruvian tales to follow. I am now deeply entrenched in the reality of being a homeowner and just a regular citizen of the world…the magic is gone, baby, but the memories do linger on.




  1. Paula Lopez says:

    Toby, like you I am greatly delighted and deeply distressed- not being able to fully enjoy your magnificent adventure, while knowing what awaited in you back home.

  2. Hi Toby!!! It´s amazing to read your impressions of the trip we did at the same time! We spent a great time with you and David, we have the best memories of you both. I hope your trip have continued well. Hope to see you again!
    Warmest regards!

    • Barbara, It is GREAT to hear from you and I am excited that you are reading ifthedevilhadmenopause. Our trip was amazing and I am sure yours was, as well. We loved meeting you and hope our paths cross again in the not to distant future…you are such a lovely couple! Take care and keep reading and please, stay in touch!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *