‘5.55am! Oh my God I’ve missed the trip up to Machu Picchu.’
As it was daylight outside I knew it could only mean one thing – the group on this Peru Odyssey sacred adventure had gone up to the crystal city without me. I was horrified, My main concern was how to tell people I’d been in Machu Picchu Pueblo, just a 25 minute bus ride from one of the most awesome seven wonders of the world and not experienced it.
‘I’ll tell them I was ill,’ was my thought.
As I mulled over my embarrassment a ringing song-sound erupted by my head.
It was 4.00am. It was still dark outside and it had been a dream.
Of course this group would never leave me behind.
By the time you’ve gone through shamanic ceremonies at extraordinary ancient sacred sites, experienced a psychedelic sacred plant medicine and been vulnerable enough to allow your weaknesses to peek below your hemline you have a pretty good bond with the group around you. As the physical weakest link I’ve had to accept helping hands a lot of the time and they’ve been there for me whenever required. I don’t like being the weakest, least fit person here. I don’t much like being the oldest. And I certainly don’t like using either of those as excuses. But it’s a challenge I’ve had to face. Usually I don’t put myself in such situations where these weaknesses are so prominent. I’ve had to lower my defences here and as a result found a greater intimacy and camaraderie than I expected. Not that I recommend being so unfit on a tour like this, even though it’s gentle in the scheme of Peruvian tours.
Each person in our 16 strong group has become more beautiful somehow – and I don’t think that’s down to all the gorgeous jewellery and colourful, vibrant clothes we’ve been buying here in Peru’s seductive markets. The mens eyes look luminous to me, expressing open and caring hearts. The women show their strength, their quirkiness and their generosity of spirit. Our age differences don’t seem to matter at all.
Machu Picchu was the culmination of our outer travels in the Andes – and what an astonishing place to visit. There is no real way to convey the measure of this site perched on top of its mountain surrounded by other guardian peaks. The Andes is a bit like an accordion – with the cosmic musician creating the frequency and wavelength of the mountains peaks and troughs depending on his music. Travelling across the Altiplano between Juliaca and Puno to Lake Titicaca the plateau was wide and flat with the mountains sprouting higher at a distance. Snaking through the Sacred Valley, the plateau had a much narrower range and the mountains start to dominate the skyline. Once you get to the Machu Picchu area however there is virtually no plateau at all and the mountains are the landscape, towering shoulder to shoulder above you. It is a place of great power and intensity as these peaks are in the ‘high jungle’ with humidity and plant life to match. Life trembles here – not in fear but as a release of enormous vibration.
We hop back on the little train this afternoon leaving behind this priceless wonder of the world, it’s magic and mystery, it’s inter-dimensional ghosts and take our time to drop altitude down to the ‘low jungle’ and a week long stay at Kapitari. The rainforest, home to huge insects, will be our home for the next week. This is our finale. It is time for us to fully experience the inner journey aspect to this tour, although we had a hint of that with the sacred plant medicine of San Pedro at the beginning of this week. Now we’re going to be introduced to the mother of all sacred plant medicines – the sacred vine Ayahuasca herself. She who holds no prisoners!
Many of the group are well versed in the visions of psychedelic journeys and some of us are not. Most of us feel both anxious and excited at the prospect. We’re all here to explore the healing and teaching this plant medicine affords. A lot is being written and shared about ‘her’ ability to transform us on a profound level, and some are heralding Ayahuasca as the plant which can save humanity from itself.
Deep in the jungle we’ll have no internet access so my next blog post will be after our tour is complete and our little ‘fellowship’ disperses. I am sure many tears will be shed as we’ll have travelled deeply together along a rare path.
I think we’re all wondering who we will be when we come out!
See you on the other side, Francesca