Monday, 27 February 2017

Hey There, Monday!

This past weekend was one for the books! I was peak hometown tourist as I checked out the Toronto Light Fest at the Distillery District, had some local brews from Mill Street Brewery and attended the farewell party for Honest Ed's hosted by Toronto for Everyone. (Rest assured, there will be blog posts to come). Sometimes having a full, fun weekend can help me really gear up for the week to come. I'm excited about the possibilities and potential of the coming days. There is always adventure available just around the corner!


Happy Monday!

I can already tell you, I should drink more water

Canada turns 150+ this year and the Netherlands sends us tulips

Very cool old photos from Lincoln, Nebraska

I wish this was my dentist!

I want one so bad!!!!

I'm going to try more single-tasking

Made this Lemon Zucchini bread and it was brill



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Thursday, 23 February 2017

Tiwanaku

Ever heard of Tiwanaku? Probably not.

Tiwanaku is to Bolivia what Machu Picchu is to Peru. Meaning it's pretty flippin' culturally significant.

Quick history lesson: from 300 to 1150 Tiwanaku was a Pre-Columbian empire that stretched over southern Peru, western Bolivia and northern Chile with its government seat in the city of Tiwanaku just south of Lake Titicaca. It is recognized as one of the most important civilizations prior to the rise of the Inca empire.  Tiwanaku gained influence over the cultures it absorbed by creating trade routes on which cities within its empire were dependant. 

The decline of this great empire, like much of its existence, remains uncertain. 
{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

From La Paz, Tiwanaku is an easy jaunt away, especially if you do like us and book a trip through a travel company. It provided us with transportation there and back, and an English speaking guide. Additional costs were for admission onto the grounds, 2 museums, and lunch. All told, not bad for $30 USD! 

And better yet, the site wasn't over run with tourists--that's pretty much Bolivia all over, not too touristy.

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia
Akapana Pyramid

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia
Puerta del Sol (Sun Gate)

Our guide was very well informed and read the tone of our (thankfully) small tour group; not giving us too much information and lingering in areas when we showed increased interest. Having never heard of the Tikanaku empire before I found all the information to be surprising and intriguing. 

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia
Walls around temple Kalasasaya

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia
Monolith El Fraile

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

It can almost go without saying; Tiwanaku is no Machu Picchu. The setting is a bit underwhelming and the ruins a bit sparse in comparison. That said, the museum is well done and houses a v. impressive 24 foot tall monolith, The Pachamama monolith ('no photos please') and the little known history of this important civilization will catch the curiosity of any history buff. In fact, archaeological work is ongoing at the site and they are making new discoveries all the time.

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia
Bone fragments and pottery shards in the earth

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia
Semi-subterranean temple with carved faces
My favourite sights of the tour included the Semi-subterranean temple courtyard with walls decorated with 175 sculptures of human (human-like) faces. Each one is different, just like a special little snowflake, some even looking like modern ideals of alien heads. Many theories surround this tiny temple. 

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia
Semi-subterranean temple with temple gate in middle ground and El Fraile visible through it

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

Another favourite piece from this mysterious site what this stone (pictured below). Looks like a normal, unassuming stone with a hole in it, right? WRONG! It's actually a very practical piece of rockery. It's an amplifier. Demonstrated by our guide as he spoke in a normal voice above the stone and then through it, my jaw literally dropped as his voice was increased. I mean, I know it's pretty simple technology but still my mind was blown at it's existence at this pre-Inca site. 

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia

{Erin Out and About} Tiwanaku, Bolivia
Present day village of Tiwanaku

Our tour of the site ended with a delicious 3 course meal at El Condor; I went with the Quinoa soup, trout, and dessert. The cost was 35 Bolivianos (approx. $5 USD)

Lunch at El Condor 


Do you like visiting museums or historic sites when travelling?

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Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Wednesday Wanderings

Bathroom message at the Gladstone Hotel, Toronto


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