Not kidnapped!

Posted at 22:7:45, 29/9/2004

Wednesday 29th September 2004, 3pm, Marina's house

Well the first thing is that was no kidnapping! Apparently the media are saying that some protestors in Cusco took some tourists hostage. According to our hostess, what actually happened is that people were (peacefully protesting because of the poor roads and because the government (possibly under pressure from the US) is trying to prevent people from growing Coca. Coca is the plant that Cocaine is extracted from, but it is also widely used throughout Peru for medicinal purposes in the all pervasive, healthy and vitamin rich, Coca tea.

Anyway, the protest was in front of one of the ancient Inca temples visited by most tourists that come through Cusco and there were 12 tourists in the church. They called the police who used heavy-handed techniques in an attempt to get to the tourists, which caused some of the protesters to riot. We didn't even know anything about it until Marina told us!

The weather in Cusco is crazy at the moment. Apparently it's usually clear blue skies at this time of year. This morning, while I was at school, we had a hailstorm with hailstones about 1/2cm diameter. It was sunny and warm in the early afternoon as I walked back from school and now we're having a torrential rainstorm! Lorna and I are joining Marcus, Sharon and Lucas (another Excel school person) on a three day trek in the Lares valley on Friday, so hopefully the weather will improve!

I learnt the past/perfect present tense today as well as finding out that my Spanish teacher like Almodobar films (famous modern Spanish director) and Garcia Marquez ("One Hundred Years of Solitude" and "Love in the Time of Colera" which Lorna has just finished and I'm about to start!).

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