Saturday, August 06, 2005

Bad Times on the Nazca Lines

Made our way down the derserty coast for 8 hours from Lima to the unremarkable town of Nazca for just one thing - to see the Nazca lines. Those spooky lines, shapes and animals sketched into the ground that are only visible from the air - odd thing seeing that they were sketched out over 1000 years ago.

What do they mean? How did they know what they were doing? Were aliens involved? As the infamous crazy Erik Von Danniken surmised.........I dont know but all I know is that ever since I was 7 and snuck into my sisters room to read her Cleo mags and take a look at her books (Von Dannikens 70's corker Chariots of the Gods was one of em) I have dreamed of seeing the lines.

So here we are in Nazca - a nasty little town full of tourist touts. Basically they know that people just come here to fly over the lines and then get out so they like to hit us touros hard. Day One Eduardo and I thought we would draw out the anticipation of seeing the lines by seeing the nazca cemetary and mummies and basically chilling out leaving us a whole day today for the 35 minute flight to see the lines.

We were told by our lovely agent we would probably fly at 8 or 9 in the morning, so excited we are up and ready by 7am. Then we are told the weather is bad so we would try for 10 - fair enough. We are taken out to the airport. There is total chaos with loads of tourists waiting to be loaded onto tiny coffin sized planes - we wait and watch a crappy video about the lines. After 3 hours waiting and some asking around it seems like maybe our names arent even on the waiting list.....hmmmm..... Our "guide" tells us to go and get lunch. We do.

Later our guide turns up in the restaurant - so sorry she says - bit of a mix up but if you can wait til 4pm I can get you on another flight with a different company. Oh-kay. The new company has a tiny conrete building for its departure lounge and ONE plane. Lovely. So we wait for another 3 hours with the only entertainment being yet another crappy video on the lines and the point when I acidentally lock myself in the toilet which doesnt flush and stinks and I cant get out. 4pm comes around and things are looking good, the group before us hop out of the plane including one girl who promptly rushes to the toilets to be sick. So then we wait, and wait, the plane goes nowhere so we wait a bit longer - then the sun starts to set. Our "guide" starts looking shifty, and finally when Ed asks them whats going on it appears we wont be going anywhere due to "problemas". Our money is returned and after a facsinating day of sitting in a hot boring shed it appears we made the trip for absolutely nothing. I then bitterly and tearfully climb into a taxi who takes us to the "Mirador" which is a rickety tower where you can kind of see the lines. We make the journey racing the setting sun, I climb the tower and and can just make out the sketchy shape of some hands. All this for two days travel - But hey, at least we got to see the video (twice).


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