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July 11, 2013

I spend a lot of time in impoverished areas—ones that have also experienced disasters—so the neighborhoods where I do projects are not usually considered “pretty.”

 the view from our new rooftop

no mini-warehouse to store things

part of the old house

A traveler I met in Ethiopia once remarked, “poverty is not picturesque.”  I agree, but often the surro...

June 26, 2013

Living La Vida Loca

After two months in Peru, I think I’ve come to accept the fact that I am not just visiting to do a quick project, I am living here.  I figure, if I’m renting two apartments (the one below shares a compound with an orphanage in Urubamba) in a country for more than an entire season, and I go to the market everyday to buy food, and...

June 11, 2013

MicroAid in the Macro World

Here at MicroAid we are committed to being as environmentally conscious as possible; even on a personal level I attempt to generate zero plastic waste.  I bring my own bags to the market and do not buy water in plastic bottles.

I use a SteriPen to purify water from the local tap.  Not only does it save the environment, but...

June 9, 2013

Just rid myself of some kind of intestinal parasite after three weeks trying to use a local homeopathic remedy: eat a big handful of mint leaves upon waking up and just before going to bed.

urubamba market - my mint dealer

Ultimately, I had to resort to antibiotics, but because of my total aversion to them and my mild state of denial, I wanted to try...

June 5, 2013

The crew works six days a week, so on Sunday, Melissa, Erin, and I went to Pisac, the other quaint tourist town, after Ollantaytambo, in the Sacred Valley.

ollantaytambo tranquilo

Terraced Inca ruins flow toward the town down the steep verdant hillside.  The wide floodplain below glitters with the snaking Vilcanota River and irrigated fields.

Pisac it...

May 22, 2013

I got to see the Torrechayoq festival in Urubamba on Sunday.

A day-long parade of dancers and musicians—dozens of crews in different amazing costumes—snaking through the town from 9 a.m. till 7 p.m.

Like the Mummers Parade in Philadelphia or Mardi Gras in New Orleans, except this one goes on all day.

A test of endurance for Jesus.

But also Quechwa cele...

May 16, 2013

Things are good here.  Projects are moving forward—slowly, but surely.

our site in urubamba backs up against another structure

While waiting for plans to be drawn up for the MicroAid homes…

Here are a few pics from an adventure I was taken on over the weekend by some archeologists: a little-visited Inca site about two hours from Cusco.

curved and perfe...

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