Andeetako altiplanoa / The high Andean plateau

Categories Peru

NOTE: EVERY ARTICLE IS WRITTEN IN BASQUE AND ENGLISH. SCROLL DOWN TO READ THE ENGLISH VERSION. 

EUSKERAZ ( 2016 /11/30 – 2016/12/05 )

Eta bizikleta, non utzi nuen?

Denbora gehiago pasa dut bizikletarik gabe, bizikleta gainean baino. Baina tira, ez naiz denbora alperrik galtzen ibili. Inken sorlekuari gero arte bat esan eta bizikleta gainean jarrita, Titikaka laku aldera abiatu naiz.

Cuscoko erdigune historiko eta turistikotik atera eta benetako herri peruar batekin elkartzen naiz berriz ere. Ecuadorretik ikusten noan bezela, bukatu gabeko ladrilozko etxez josia dago Peru ere. Abandonatutako txakurrak gero eta gehiago ikusten dira eta hauek ere ez dituzte txirrindulariak maite, beraz, erne ibili behar naiz ur bidoia eskutan dudala, edozein momentutan zaunkaka datozkidan zakurrak uxatu ahal izateko. Kotxe eta eraikuntzen dendak berriz, argazki sexistaz beteak daude. Kotxeen lubrikante edota gurpilen iragarkiak, erdi biluzik dauden emakumeen argazkiek hornitzen dute.

Tamalez, emakumeen aurkako bortizkeria parez par ezagutu dut eta egoerari aurre egiteko dauden zailtasunak onartzea kostatzen zait. Fisikoki eta psikologikoki kolpatuak diren emakumeak, behin eta berriz beraien bikoteengana itzultzen dira eta legearen babesa sinbolikoa izatea ere ez da iristen. Ondorioz emakume asko erailtzen dituzte urtero.

“Esaterako, Machu Picchu-tik Cuscorako bidean gindoazela, bide bazterrean, amildegiaren ertzean, lurrean etzanda  zegoen emakume bat aurkitu genuen. Besoak eta belaunak odoletan zituen eta beldur krisi batean zegoen. Bere mutil lagunak mototik bultza eta lurrera bota zuen. Bideak 4 metroko zabalera zuen eta amildegiak ehundaka metroko altura. Segituan eraman genuen ospitalera eta polizia deitu genuen. Berak berriz, ez zuen salatu nahi izan.”

“Hurrengo egunean, Cuscoko plaza nagusian, Plaza de Armas-en, gizon bat bere eskuez emakume bat itto nahiean zebilen. Ohar bat egin genion eta erantzun txar baten ondoren, biek taxi batean alde egin zuten.”

Homosexualitatea berriz, aipatu ere ez det egingo, horrelako gauzak, gaixotasuna baino madarikazio bat dela uste bait dute askok. Zentzu honetan, normaltasuna, onarpena eta errespetu batetik argi-urteetara dagoen egoera jasanezina bizitzen da.

Cuscotik 80 km-tara dagoen herri txiki batean bukatu dut lehen etapa, Quiquijana. Ur beroa duen hostal bakar bat ere ez dago eta egia esan, ura duten hostal gutxi batzuk besterik ez daude. Hemen, kultura ministerioko bi langile ezagutzen ditut, Sharmely eta bere aita. Elizetan aurkitzen diren artelanen zaharberritze lanetan aritzen dira. Erlijio katolikoa eta Inken kulturari buruzko hamaika istorio kontatu dizkidate. Quechuek, lana bukatzean, artoz egindako Chicha bat hartzera joaten dira eta horra joan gera gu ere. Ostatu hauetan ez da gaztelerarik entzuten, denak quechuaz ari dira. Ez det tutik ulertzen baino gustora nago bertako giroa biziz eta aita-alabek kontatzen dizkidaten istorioak entzunez. Bizikletaz bidaiatuko ez banu, sekula ez nintzateke herrixka honetan geldituko. Hara hor bizikletaz bidaiatzearen xarma.

Sicuani, Pucara, Llave eta Puno izango dira hurrengo herriak. 3500 metrotik gora daude eta altura hauetan kirola egiteak neke handiagoa suposatzen du. Koka hosto gutxi batzuk pedalei indar gehiagorekin emateko bultzadatxo bat eskeiniko didate. Pucarako herri galduan, beste lau txirrindularirekin elkartu naiz. Bi frantses, kolonbiar bat eta zelanda berriko bat. Hau sorpresa politta, hurrengo egunak elkarrekin egingo ditugu. Zelanda berrikoak inglesa besterik ez daki, kolonbiarrak gaztelera eta frantsesak denetarik pixka bat. Denen artean hitz egin ahal izateko itzulpenekin gabiltza, erotzeko modukoa baino giro earra daukagu.

Orain arte ez bezela, txirrindulari gehiago ikusten dira Titikaka lakutik aurrera eta istorioak elkarbanatuz eta elkarri gomendioak emanez, bidaiaren fase berri baten hasiera irudikatzen da.

ENGLISH  ( 2016/11/30 – 2016/12/05 )

Oh, my god! Where did I leave my bike?

So far, I have spent more time without the bike, than riding with it. Who cares! I have not wasted my time in vain.  I say goodbye to Incas birthplace to ride towards Lake Titicaca.

As soon as I leave behind the historical and touristic centre of Cusco, I enter the real Peru. As well as in Ecuador, the city is full of half-finished brick houses. The number of abandoned dogs is even bigger; therefore, I must keep an eye opened and the water can ready to shoo them away in case they come barking towards me. Construction and car shops are full of sexist symbols. Car lubricant or tyre ads are made with semi-nude women photos.

Unfortunately, I have also witnessed episodes of domestic violence against women and I find difficult to accept the passivity with which the authorities and the society combat the situation. Physically and psychologically battered women come back once and again with their partners without reporting the violence to the police. In addition, the support of the law and the police does not even reach to be symbolic. In consequence, many women are murdered every year.

“On the road from Machu Picchu to Cusco , we came across with a woman lying on the edge of the cliff. Her boyfriend pushed her from the motorbike. The road was 4 meter wide and on the edge there was a hundreds meters high cliff. She was bleeding and with a panic attack. We helped her to hospital and we called the police to report the situation. Nevertheless, she did not want to report, she was terrified.”

“I also witnessed another case of domestic violence in the middle of  “Plaza de Armas”, main square in Cusco. A man was strangling a woman with his own hands. As soon as we grab his attention, they both went away in a taxi.”   

Regarding homosexuality, I am not even going to mention it. More than an illness, it is considered a curse. In this sense, the situation is unbearable and it is light years far from being normal, accepted and respected.

Quiquijana is the small village I end in this bike stage, 80 km far from Cusco. There is not a single hostel with warm water and there are only some of them with just water. Here I get to know two workers from the culture ministry, Sharmely and his father. They are artists and they restore works of art of churches. We spend the noon talking about catholic religion and Inca’s culture. After working in the mountains, the Quechuas go to drink a “chicha”, a drink made of corn. So do we.  In this kind of bars, no-one speaks Spanish, but quechua. I do not understand a single word but I enjoy the atmosphere and of course, the stories of Sharmely and his father. If I had not travelled by bike, I would have never stopped in this village. Here you find the charm of travelling by bike.

Sicuani, Pucara, Llave and Puno are the next villages. They are over 3500 meters and doing sports at this altitude is more exhausting. Coca leaves will give me a push to pedal here with more energy. In the lost town of Pucara I meet four touring cyclists. Two French, a Colombian and a New Zealand. What a nice surprise, I will ride the following days with them. The New Zealand speaks only English and the Colombian only Spanish, so we must translate every conversation. Crazy but funny, the good vibe makes us more patient!

Unlike so far, alongside Lake Titicaca there are more and more touring cyclists. We share stories and recommendations among us and it looks the beginning of a new stage of the trip.

Isaak Elduaien
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