Take the longest road, get lost, and talk to the locals before arriving at Machu Picchu

Take the longest road, get lost, and talk to the locals before arriving at Machu Picchu

by Elizabeth Plascencia

Machu Picchu (Photo Cred: Martin Lang)

It’s actually crazy to me how much technology knows the individual. As swiftly as my fingers tap along the brightly lit keyboard in front of me, Google already recognizes the “Mach…” and automatically fills in the rest – Machu Picchu. Sure – this once mysteriously epic, wild adventure of a lost city right off the Inca Trail is now practically a household name.

As I was saying, technology knows. It listened to me and remembered when just shy of seven months ago I searched Machu Picchu. My initial interest in the ruins began early on as an amateur geologist interested in the towering Andes. This initial spark was of course dimmed by reality and a lack of funds in the bank. My second wave of interest ignited once more when news of the Global Climate Change Mosaic caught my attention on campus. Surely enough this could not be true. Could it?

Fast forward to present day as I sit here at my dorm desk reflecting on the projection of this semester. Fall 2014 of my junior year at Dickinson College could not be more jam packed with adventures, loads of reading, hard work, and ultimately gratitude. I am honored to be a part of a team that will dive deep into the pressing topic of global climate change.

Mark Adams’ richly descriptive recollection of his Peruvian adventures in Turn Right at Machu Picchu truly was a highlight read for me this summer. Adams presents an organic unfolding of what may have been the greatest adventure of his life; and for that, I thank him. Thank you, Mr. Mark Adams – wherever you may be. I thank him for reminding me to be mindful and thoughtful. One should not just desire to visit said place, rather there be an educational curiosity, cultural tie, pure thrill. Something. I am done with this generation that post “selfies” in front of grandiose UNESCO World Heritage Sites. I challenge anyone planning a trip to this sacred landscape to do their reading, watch a fair share of documentaries, perhaps even read this book, or run by this list written by Mark Adams himself.


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