After 2 days with no internet we're finally back connected with the outside world!
We were picked up early from our hotel, for a change, and driven north east from Cusco into the mountains to find the sacred valley. On the way we stopped off at a big outside market with the usual type stalls plus some others that made an interesting changes. One guy had an open fire going and Alpaca joints splayed out on metal grids sizzling away tastefully close by. We tend to cook food/meat on top of the fire but this was a good 2 foot away so the fat from the meat dripped onto the ground rather than onto the fire. It smelled and sounded wonderful but it was going to be a good couple of hours before this was ready to eat. There was a live animal auction going in as well as a competition for who could get the most milk from a cow in a certain time. The whole looked to be the Peruvian equivalent of the County Show!
Another 10 minute drive and we were ready to set off on our bikes. No matter what we tried we couldn't get a helmet to fit me so we set off with 3 we'll protected heads and mine in a baseball cap I'd brought along for sun protection. We had a total of about 4 hours cycling to do with nearly all of it being down hill. This sounds good but in reality we were either going hell for leather down a steep dirt track trying desperately to stay at a reasonable speed using brakes or struggling uphill (ok, we were mostly pushing!).
It is a great way to see the countryside though and you GE a much better feeling than sitting in the back of a minibus. After about 3 hours we stopped and got into the support vehicle for a side trip to see an amazing ore-Incan terracing area at the village of Moray. We were beginning to learn that much of what has been credited to the Inca's isn't, they only reigned for 150 years in about 1450 and most of the structures were built 500-1000 years before that.