Oruro is a god-awful, no-good lousy town. I make up my mind as soon as I jump out of the bus and the poignant smell of piss and trash hit me, a cocktail so typical to third-world towns and bus stations but which I have so far successfully avoided in Bolivia.
Some people in my Salkantay group were worried that Machu Picchu might not live up to the expectations. After all, all of us already knew what it looked like from the kazillion pictures on Instagram, our travel friends’ photos and the postcards sold all over Cusco that look like they were designed by someone’s dad who’s just learning how to open his e-mails. I didn’t really doubt for a second.
It’s been a while, eh? I’ve missed you, believe me when I say I have. Sometimes I think about all the familiar places and comfortable routine that I never got used to even after four years, and I feel a little pang of nostalgia for them. Saudades, as they’d say here.
For the first time in months I can remove my jacket. The touch of the sun is gentle and loving, like that of a lover’s.