The Adventure Continues… And Ends.

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The Final Countdown:

Nah Nah Nah NaHHHH

Okay I’ll show myself out now


But in all seriousness, its the end of the world as I know it, and I feel fine!


…”seriously sharp, we talked about this, no more freaking music puns, they dont work!”…

…”But.. But”…

…”No But’s, you cringey degen, just get on with the content before you embarrass yourself past the physical bounds of the known universe”…


 

 

 

 

It’s the final week of blog posts, and I, like many others am totally happy (I’m sure you guys are too, with the depressed rants and all). With the end of Blog Posts, I will finally feel the winding down of the school year firsthand, as almost all real work will cease to exist. But then again, that will mean the.. the… oh dear god…

 

 

Sorry everyone, just a short existential… uh… breakdown.

Guess It’s time to say goodbye to my blog posts, and move on with my life, and, you know, actually do something with my life.

What to do… what to do… Hmmmm…

Guess I’ll have to attempt to escape my eternal prison again.

Uggg.

Well at least that eternal ghoul isn’t around anymore, so I guess I can push on, right?

Yep, seems all clear.

I’m actually quite happy to be able to actually do something today as, like I expected, it turns out video games cannot entertain one man for over 100 hours straight. Hopefully now I’ll have some cool content to actually explain, and just elaborate on a single idea until the eventual heat death of the universe.

Well, anywho, Time to get moving and explore some more of the wondrous paradise known as the, “outside.” Hopefully, The current conditions remain, as I have to say, It’s actually nicer out here then in my permanently dim cave, and… oh deary me…

Heh.. Heh…… Oh god…. RUN

Quick! To the emergency exit I just added to this already convoluted plot line in order to move the story forward in an attempt to make me not look like a failure.

Ah yes, the garage, the room no-one goes into unless they want to do something active, so basically, never. Unbeknownst to most this room contains 3 objects most viable for escape, which have been sitting here for over 25 eons, Bikes.

It’s time to skedaddle my good friends…

I’m… I’m actually doing it. Im free…

Everything has led to this moment. After years of stress and pain, locked in an endless cycle of depression and failure, I’ve gripped onto the one ray of light left and made my leave.

Goodbye, my dear friends.

Okay… Didn’t think I  would get scammed by communists this time, but fine.

It truly is the end of the line dear readers. There’s no point in continuing this ode to teenage angst If I can actually do something with my life.

Ahead of me is the open road, and what’s down it, nobody knows.

-Peace

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Purposeless

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I’ve officially run out of ideas.

To be fair, we all saw this coming (I mean just look at a few of my last posts, dear god…), and now with the completion of the peru saga as well as all AP tests, I have nothing. Of course I only have 6 more weeks of this to suffer through, so that’s a plus, I assume.

So welcome to a new, and final category of posts, titled appropriately, “Sharp’s End of the Year Running out of Ideas Bonanza!”

Okay look, I’m not really that creative.

Anywho, I’ve realized that currently, I’m experiencing complete purposelessness. This is mainly due to what my schedule this year has been. Basically, when it comes to school, I’m a complete overachiever, which one can likely blame on my isolated silicon valley upbringing. This year I took three AP level Classes, Biology, World History, and Japanese (again, do not worry, I’m not a filthy weeb), and every night I would work from around 5pm-12am in order to keep my current GPA. Now that’s all well and fine, and good for me for putting merit in my work, but when suddenly, with a month of school left to go, all of your heavy hitter classes cease to exist, the existentialism sinks in. My classmates, on the other hand, are likely enjoying their release from stress, like normal functioning human beings (how dare they!?), but for me, when the work ceases, and I actually have to deal with myself, the existential dread sets in.

Now once I get home from school I find myself with way, way, and I mean way too much time to myself. In the world of homework induced stress I was able to convince myself that it was fine to just do work and then relax with youtube and gaming for a few hours a week, but now that I have no work, It feels wrong for me to spend times doing those things. People say to go back to your hobbies, but the problem is, over a year of this cycle, working all day and playing games on the weekend have become my hobbies.

Moving on, as my boy Bill Wurtz says, I’m…

Or not. Turns out I’m past the required word limit set by my teacher, sooooo, gg boys ez content.

Let me just throw in some random images and call it a day!

And Bing BaDa Boom I’m done, Peace!


 

 

 

 

 

No. I can’t do this anymore. I…

I…

I can’t just sit here, putting in minimal effort and cranking our garbage. I’ve got the determination, gosh darn it. I got to do something, anything.

I’m going to do it, I’m going to stand up for what’s right and go outside and get the content you people deserve.

To the outside!

For months I’ve been locked in this desolate cell, slaving away at mountains of work, hiding beneath hours of games and videos, trying at all to stay afloat in a sea of self-induced stress. But No longer! Today, I will head out of the strange safeness of this hell heap into the unknown.  Who knows what creatures we will find, what new situations we will uncover, and even, along the way, be forced into actual social interaction (Anything but…)

Come on. Deep Breaths now, Deep Breaths. We’ve almost made it, just a few more ounces of effort and I’ll be free.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the goose has landed, I repeat, the goose has landed.

It’s a miracle, fellow viewers, all those memes, all those dreams, they all culminated in this one moment. I want to thank the academy with this highlight video of all the goods times that came in the creation of this moment.

Oh… Okay, looked like I got scammed.

Nonetheless, It turns out that the outside world is pretty nice I’ve gotta say. Its not really all that bad.

Yah know, I’ve decided that there will be no more woe is me kinda garbage, from now on I will venture forth, into new landscapes, claiming them for the glory of…. wait wait, what?

No-one told me the outside world would have spooky animals, this was not on the brochure?! What kinda garbo trash am I witnessing? None of my calculations led to this outcome. You know what, that’s it, I’m outta here.

Now come on sharp, you gave a whole big speech about your future glory and you do this? We gotta get out there and show were not a utter degen.

Yeah, your probably right interior voice that I didn’t just come up with because I had more photos I wanted to fit in the narrative. I should go back out. Besides that eater of worlds has likely skedaddled on out by now.

Well it seems all clear. Time to get back to some narcissistic interior gloating.

And thus sharp, after outwitting the vile beast, returned to the promised world of the outside, preparing his holy conquest of the fields of content, and… oh come on…

Can’t you do anything right?

Okay wow other internal voice I also made up for failed comedic effect, way to be a jerk. What you expect me to do with my life? actually accomplish things? seems like you’ve got the wrong sharp.

And besides that, uh, thing, was back.

I think its best for all parties if we just refrain from our attempts of freedom for, let us say, another week?

In the meantime I should likely find some sort of way to protect myself from the… oh this will work wonderfully.


 

And thus ends this week’s post.

I know it was a bit different from posts from weeks prior but, hey, at least its not incessant depressed rumbling. And I do apologize for the strong start and then a quick death, because, as I said, I’m truly not that creative.

Peru Trip: Cusco

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I awoke after a long nights sleep, having passed out 10 hours earlier after the eventual time that was yesterday, and found myself greeted by another amazing hotel. Interestingly enough, It seemed I actually did take photos of the hotel the other night, even though I swore I had not.

Today was our last full day here in Peru, and what better way to spend it then in Cusco, the old capital of the Inca.

After a quick, so-so breakfast, we met up for our final time with Elliot, who would take us to various archaeological sites around the city. 

Our first stop was very small, consisting only of a road and two buildings, but had some really nice intricate architectural. Apparently this was used as some sort of border checkpoint to control entry into the city of Cusco in ancient times. 

Next up was some very large rooms, which while pretty meh, offered some great views.

The second to last stop, was much more interesting, however.

From the ground, the ruins looked like nothing more then large cuts into rock, as if it was simply a mountain that had been chiseled away, but from above, this cut rock face turned into an intricate maze of pathways, plazas, and caves. This rock face was a religious sight, being home to countless rituals, ceremonies, and most importantly, human sacrifice.

A rock believed to have been used for human sacrifice, with its center stained red.

Sadly, due to safety reasoning, only a small segment of the intricacies were available to the public, so we were forced to move on.

Someone sure isn’t happy

This didn’t matter though, because the last sight was just as interesting.

This site consisted of two expertly crafted walls with multi layered terraces standing opposite each other, with a large plane in the middle. As elliot let us know this place would lead to the history of peru as we know it, as it was the site of the last stand of the Inca against revolters and the spanish conquistadors. They were the last guards of the holy city of the inca, and once they fell, so too did the empire.

Just like the conquistadors had over 500 years ago, we followed the trail from this site, and descended into the city, but unlike the spanish, we were not there to pillage, only observe.

One Happy Camper

A rare good photo of my sister

I honestly found myself filled with wonder as we descended onto the city, with my mind racing through all of history, recalling the people, events, and changes that this city must have gone through without time. I couldn’t wait to find every little speck of history this land held, and its a real shame I never truly did get to.

DOG SQUAD!!

Eventually we reached the Central Plaza of Cusco, which, even in its cloudy state, had this sense of beauty to it, being strictly ancient, but at the same time feeling completely modern, as beside every colonial building was a restaurant, a person using a cellphone, or a shop.

It was here that we made our final goodbye to Elliot, our faithful guide, having accompanied us from the Sacred Valley, to Machu Picchu, and finally, Cusco. The trip, physically, and mentally, was coming to a close.

Luckily Elliot left us some good recommendations of places to go within the city and I was ready to blast to some of Cusco’s many expansive museums to discover the lost lasting history of this time capsule of a town, that is after a nice lunch.

We went to this burger place called Pa Pa Cho’s which was run, surprisingly, by the same chef who runs the fancy restaurant we would eat at tonight.

The presentation was amazing and the food likewise was just as good.

However, as you will see from the lack of photos, I never did meet my goal of seeing this town’s history, as the day would take an unexpected turn, for the worse. [redacted] decided to use this day as an opportunity to buy more textile. “Yay!” said everybody with any sense in them, because nothing gives you more cultural exposure then sitting in antique shops and negotiating prices.

So yah, that’s how I spent my last day in one of the most interesting places in the world. Fun right?

I mean at least I got to go to this cool coffee shop run by some british dude.

They hooked me up with the coolest ice coffee i’ve ever seen, it was like a freaking coffee beer, and it was really, really, good.

So after a day of nothing but gloomingly following around [redacted] to various musty stops, I felt depressed. But dinner definitely helped cheer me up, as it was at one of Cusco’s nicest and most exclusive restaurants, Chicha.

The meal was good, nothing amazing, but definitely good. We went returned to our hotel, and went to sleep soon thereafter, as we had a plane to catch.

And Bingbiddly Bang Bang (?) were done with Peru Posts! Yay! and done with aps for that matter so expect some actual content because ill have time to do stuff.

 

Peru Trip: Macchu Picchu Vicchu Mcbicchu Pt 2

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You know what, screw the opening, let’s get right into this cesspool of failed potential and the epitome of my destroyed work ethic.

I woke around 9 AM and promptly got dressed in my completely overworn hiking clothes because today, I was going to hike an exclusive, and dangerous part of Macchu Picchu, Huayna Picchu. This is highest point in Macchu Picchu where there are still ruins present, and is limited to 200 visitors a day due to its small pathways and sometimes extremely dangerous conditions. Luckily the Inca God of Sun gave us his blessing and we awoke without there being no rain at all and nearly clear skies.

After meeting up with Elliot, we headed towards the entrance to Huayna Picchu, Enjoying some last peeks at Macchu Picchu’s lower ruins.

The Mountain on the Right is Huayna Picchu

Yep, Dad, That’s A Wall

After that short, just as beautiful, venture, we arrived at the Checkpoint.

After signing our names on the register, which is required to make sure that everyone makes it back at the end of the day so they dont have to send out search parties, we were on our way.

One last look at where we’re going

 

Ancient inca steps, which would take us to the top

The climb wasn’t actually that hard, as there was almost always ropes available to grab onto to keep your footing, but it was still terrifying as one wrong step meant certain death.

 

 

After around an hour of climbing the steep steps, we reached the start of the ruins, which were used as a military outpost in Inca times.

That’s Macchu Picchu in the Distance

But there, we were faced with another stressful climb up to the top of the ruins, because these inca stairs were extremely small covering only 1/4 of foot.

And then, the infamous death steps, which ,while not anymore dangerous than the prior steps, are the most terrifying part of the trip simply because of the fact that on your left is a one thousand foot drop.

My dad took over 10 minutes climbing these due to his claustrophobia. Of course, the views, are all worth it.

Shortly thereafter we made our descent, much slower than going up.

Afterwards we met up with the ladies and had lunch at the hotel restaurant, which was just as good as last night dinner. Afterwards, I took a shower and recuperate after the draining hike that was Huanya Picchu, and chilled for a couple hours until it was time for the tea reception for passengers on the Hiram Bingham train, which would be returning us to Cusco from Macchu Picchu. The tea service, while nothing hoity toity, got me very excited for what was to come on the actual train.

Shortly thereafter, we got back on the vertigo busses and headed back down to the base of the mountain. Macchu Picchu decided to give us a proper send off though, in the form of a clear sky with a rainbow.

The bus dropped us off back at the train station where I got my first glance at the might of the Hiram Bingham.

While we waited to be boarded onto the train, we sat in a nice waiting area with live music and free drinks. I decided to finally try Inca Kola, which I assumed was some sort of peruvian rip off of coke.

However as it turns out, it was actually made my Coca-Cola and was more of a strong cream soda, and for about a minute gave me extreme nostalgia, reminding me of a taste I thought I would never experience again, Melon Fanta, a drink available only in japan, and something I wouldn’t hesitate to put a bullet into the back of someone’s head for. However after a few more sips, this taste devolved into nothing more than a sugary mess, and I was again, disappointed.

Soon enough, we were boarded onto the train.

And wow…. It felt like something straight of the early 1900s in the heyday of european imperialism. We were told by the waiters that the bar and live music was ready in the entertainment cart if we wished to head inside.

Now, due to the total pretentiousness of the train so far I expected to be greeted by nothing more than a full on orchestra, and yet it seems the better name for the Hiram Bingham, would be, “the classy party train.”

The music was 3 peruvian electric guitarists, who straight out jammed for 40 minutes straight, yelling at the top of their lungs, and passing out maracas and tambourines. Sadly I lack any real good images of this event, due to the rockiness of a train, and because wordpress are greedy cucks who dont let you post videos without paying them.

After the impromptu rock concert, we had a nice and simple dinner back in our seats, which I also dont have photos have, for reasons unbeknownst to me.

By the time we got reached our hotel, I was extremely tired and passed out before I could take any more photos.

Peru Trip: Macchu Picchu Vicchu Mcbicchu Pt 1

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WAWAWEEWOW, its me, Sharp, back at it again with the cringey openings (kill me). Today I felt like writing a blog post, so here I am (I’m just kidding I don’t want to write this garbage send help). Although I could go on and on about the connotations of this post also being a two parter, I think that that joke and any other funny thing I’ve said have been overused into oblivion, mainly because I’m seriously not that creative. I mean just look at what I’ve done in the first 100 words: I tried to make an interesting opening (dear god), have used parenthesis multiple times already in order to make “jokes” (its not like you’ve got anything better), and now I’m making some sort of dumb meta rant that it in itself in terrible and entertaining. I mean, at this point, why don’t I just my fingers up and down the keyboard, throw in some images, and bam turn it in for a grade. Its not like anyone actually reads this trash.

Anyhow, after that existential crisis, time to write some things on topic in a futile attempt to achieve some sense of self merit.

Continuing with the Peru saga, I awoke this day like many others, tired, and not wanting to do anything with my life. However, also like many other things in life, I was forced to get on with it (Ex. This Blog Post).Luckily, today we were heading to Macchu Picchu, the lost city of the Incas, so exciting stuff right. After a breakfast as disappointing as those before it (thankfully the last one), we met up with Elliot took us to the train station where we would catch a ride to Augas Calliente, Macchu Picchu. The train, while simplistic, was much better then any garbage you could get in the good ol’ US of A, likely because in a mountainous country like Peru, the only real way to travel easily is via train.

The train ride was very calm, and I spent the majority of it listening to my signature 80’s alternative rock while gazing at the passing landscapes and munching on the basic snack they gave us.

After an hour of chilling, we arrived in Augas Calliente, and, while moving through the town on the way to our bus to Macchu Picchu, were treated to even more sights, at least, after we passed through the tourist trap palooza that was the train station.

The famous bus ride up to Macchu Picchu, was, of course, terrifying, as you slowly advance up the mountain at ridiculous speeds with 100 foot cliffs five feet away from you. While it did have a lot of great views, I was too busy hyperventilating to capture them all.

After a short recovery we reached the start of Macchu Picchu, where, after a small break at our hotel, the Belmond Macchu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge, we began our tour of the lost city of the Inca

As we passed through the entrance gate and headed towards the city, the suspense was building.

As we rounded the corner, I felt my breath float away in the endless abyss as I was greeted with what is appropriately a wonder of the world.

This Outer wall, while nothing special compared to what was behinds it, still succeeded in making me appreciate the power of human intuition. As we continued, Elliot brought us a nearby hill so that we could get a view of the lost city from above before we ventured into it.

After a little more walking, we got an even better view. This amazing sight only lasted for a few seconds, as in the unpredictability of Peru, its not uncommon for clouds to cover up everything. And yet, there was something completely beautiful about seeing what gives it its name of, “the city in the clouds”.

Soon afterwards, we descended into the city, where Elliot showed us the intricate working of the architecture and the believed purpose of certain items. While I could narrate all of this and spend three hours doing so, AP’s have completely made me lose all senses of motivation, so enjoy like 30 pictures with zero to no context. Once again, I apologize.

Of course, I couldn’t waste this opportunity to take a few terrible selfies to be disappointed about in a few Y̶e̶a̶r̶s M̶o̶n̶t̶h̶s days.

After a short cringe break, We continued with our exploration

After this, we made our exit out of Macchu Picchu for the day and headed for a late lunch at the buffet outside the entrance. It was nothing special, but they did have some really cool live music.

Afterwards, rain started coming down hard, and for safety reasons, we decided to not be idiotic tourists and call it a day, going back to our hotel and getting some rest.

The Macchu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge was actually really nice, and was my favorite hotel we stayed at on this trip. The rooms were really comfy but, as Ill soon discuss, that wasn’t the best part.

After some much need relaxation from the high altitude hiking, We headed down to the hotels restaurant for dinner. Due to prior experience with the Belmond, I was gloom fully looking towards another night of disappointment. But, it came to my surprise, that here, at the top of the freaking world, I would finally find the food I had been looking for this whole time.

I got there grilled chicken breast in quinoa crust, filled with cheese and ham, simply because I was craving chicken. For something with as much going on as that, you wouldn’t really expect amazingness, but this chef, this chef knew what he was doing

I cant even describe what it was, it was just phenomenal, and I recommend anyone who visits Macchu Picchu to try this restaurant out. 

After some good ice cream I returned to my room and slipped into sleep, in order to prep for tomorrow’s adventure, Climbing Huanya Picchu.

Peru Trip: Sacred Valley Pt 2

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Oh boy oh boy oh boy! Its everyone’s favorite time of week as Sharp is sitting down to write a 2000 word rambley mess like he always does. One would begin to think that sharp is sick of this, and would love nothing more then to blow his own head off instead of continuing this garbage, and they would correct! Alas, it turns out there’s this thing called “graded assignments” which forever drag him away from the light of day and into the world of work.

Moving on to the content, this week I will be continuing my never ending sprawl about Peru (come on sharp, only 4 more posts to go). Due to our hiking escapades the other day, I awoke sore, not really wanting to do anything. But, I was soon dragged out of bed by my father, the supposed, “Go Get Em” champ, who claimed we had things to do, which while true, was not a great motivation.

Anywho, I dragged myself out of bed, had a another disappointing breakfast, and hoped into the car to head on today’s adventure, ATVing. Now, well things like ATVs and ziplines are most definitely prime stereotypes of uncultured tourism, they can be really fun regardless of where in the world you are.

When we arrived at the area for ATVing we found out that this place hosted all sorts of extreme activities like ziplines and white water rafting, which all had dozens of people prepped to go, and yet only my Father and I were going ATVing.

We got ourselves suited up with their included equipment of gloves, goggles, and helmets, and went out to meet our guide and his furry companion, moji.

Soon enough we had hopped on our ATV’s and headed out to enjoy the sites of the sacred valley. Moji, the aforementioned dog, ran with the ATV’s the entire time, something completely surprising for a small dog at altitudes of over 10,000 feet. As our guide would later tell us, he runs the trail twice a week and then sleeps at home for the remainder!

Our ride started with us having to hug the side of the street as we made our way to the bridge that would take us off the paved roads. This was arguable the worst part of the ride, but hey, it was to be expected. Once we reached the bridge we took a quick photo-op and then moved on.

After passing the bridge we traveled a short distance forward before we were stopped by an incoming train, forcing us to wait a bit longer to start the main event. However it was here that our guide pointed out something very interesting, the sky lodges 

Those four tiny shacks built into the side of a cliff are actually a hotel and restaurant, reached exclusively through mountain climbing and descended from by ziplining. While I do like a bit of an adrenaline rush, I’m not enough of a junkie to ever say that looks fun. Shortly thereafter, the train left and we blasted off.

My favorite part of the ride was undoubtedly the reactions of the dogs in the villages we passed through. They would bark at us, and try to chase after our ATVs which I found quite funny simply because every dog there was a really small breed. So basically, just imagine being chased by approximately 26 chihuahuas while you ride a bike.

After around a half hour of riding, we came to a stop in front of a small unmarked inca ruin, one of many in peru, and climbed to the top in order to get some good views.

We hopped back on and stopped to turn around shortly after passing another pair of ruins.

I was worried that we had already finished our ATV adventures and was disappointed that our ride would only last 45 minutes, but I was pleasantly surprised to see that their was more. As we reached the start, we turned away from the bridge, and instead, headed towards the mountains.

It was on this mountainside ride that we witnessed the only screw up of this day, me driving off the rode into the bushes. Now, like the irresponsible degenerate I am, I will present an excuse, that albeit unreasonable, will attempt to accurate explain why I drove directly the beaten path in the grass.

As we traveled out of the small towns of the valley into the highlands of the mountain, we encountered an increasing amount of dreaded bugs. Now, I dont really care about a few flies or moths or whatnot, but the bug that caused me to go careening into parts unknown was freaking huge. It was undoubtedly the largest fly I had ever seen, and even while I was moving at 25 mph, it somehow was able to latch onto my leg. It looked slimy, like it was about to burst, so of course, I tried to get that garbage off of me.

Regardless, It still happened, so, ehhhhhhhhh.

Anywho, shortly thereafter we finally reached the end of our ride, and after quick photo op, rode back to where we started and bid farewell to our guide and his doggo Moji.

I spent the next few hours lounging around the hotel, and I planned to spend the rest of the day the same way, but I was once again dragged out of my R&R by my parents to go to lunch at this local place recommended by the hotel known as Poka Poka. And, like the ATVing, it seemed this was another good choice

As you can see above, the restaurant was very cutesy and bright, and while we were the only ones there, we were immediately enchanted by every little detail. As I would soon find out, this decor was not just a facade, like the Belmond, but instead had food to match. I ordered croquettes, as I was in the mood for some fried goodness, and something that I thought was completely unexpected to be seen here in the middle of peru, Chinese Shrimp and tenderloin Stir Fry.

Albeit simplistic, the croquettes were warm, soft, and delicious, containing chicken, beef, and pork. I felt like It was exactly what I was expecting, nothing more, but luckily, nothing less. Very satisfying nonetheless.

Moving onto the main course, the chinese stirfry. This was actually remarkable as there was no way I was expecting something nearly this good. The shrimp tasted fresh and the beef was cooked to perfection.

After that satisfying meal, I returned back to the hotel and returned to my state of chill until we headed out for dinner.

Our dinner was nothing special and was at a local, apparently more hoity-toity, hotel. I dont remember much of it, likely because of the thrill that would be our next day, our adventures in Machu Picchu.

Peru Trip: Sacred Valley Pt 1

After spending five minutes trying to think of an original opening (honestly the only real effort that goes into these), I decided that its best for everyones stability for me to just get started.

So, second post of the peru trip, followed by a part one. Im sure that many of you are convulsing right now over the thought of me writing a post that has more then one part, and I would be too, but I assure you that this series will continue. This is because its nearly ap test time, so unless you were looking forward to content that consists of a picture of my wall and me complaining about school (I know, disappointing, right), this is truly the only thing I have to talk about.

Moving on, I rose from my bed at around 8 and quickly got dressed and packed up my stuff up. I had another disappointing breakfast, and headed down to the lobby were me met back up with Carlo who was going to be taking us to the airport to catch a flight to Cusco, the capital of the Incas. Now the reason we are flying to cusco, instead of driving there, is because its either a one hour flight, or 24 hours of driving, so not the best trade off.

Our time at the airport was pretty uneventful, the only interesting thing was that there were numerous dunkin donuts and papa john’s scattered around the airport. Our plane flight was also uneventful, and I spent the majority of it watching the office. Soon, we had landed and the second the stepped off the plane the altitude hit us like a truck. Unlike Lima, which is relatively close to sea level, Cusco is at 10,000 feet, so, by the time I had taken my first steps I was already winded. We went through their small airport and met our driver, Carlos, who would take us from Cusco to the sacred valley of the Inca. From what I saw of it, Cusco was a beautiful city, and it was shame we had no time to see it as before I knew it we had pulled into the countryside.

Last Peek at Cusco

Our drive was breathtaking as we drove through Peru’s many mountains, witnessing hundreds of Inca terraces still in use by farmers. I had wished to travel uninterrupted, being able to simply relax and observe, but [REDACTED] had other plans. For some reason unbeknownst to me, [REDACTED] loves things like textiles, pillows, and other “oriental” junk that I personally view as useless and a waste of money. So [REDACTED] asked Carlos to take us to a place where [REDACTED] could purchase, “authentic” textiles. I mean, to be honest, textiles are sold in every city in earth and are the definition of overpriced scams, because there’s no good way to tell if their handmade or machine fabricated in bulk. However the place we went to get these textiles had some cool unique designs, but more importantly, it had a cute puppy who My sister and I played with while [REDACTED] wasted our money.

After that hour long excursion, we returned to our car and continued on our journey, where karma seemed to be on my side, as shortly thereafter we stopped once again, but this time, for something actually worthwhile. We had stopped a cliffside to get a view of the entire sacred valley, a completely breathtaking sight, completely different from anything you could find in santa barbara.

Shortly after that we arrived at our hotel, the Belmond Rio Sagrada, and being extremely tries from the day long car ride, I slinked to my room, without taking any pictures mind you, and collapsed in the air conditioning where I would watch youtube and relax until dinner a hour or so later.

The restaurant at the Rio Sagrada had a really nice ambiance and I they were kind enough to create an entirely separate vegan menu for my sister, but she declined to attend because she said she wasn’t hungry even though she hadn’t eaten for 16 hours.

I ordered a quinoa bisque and a guinea pig confit, because, hey, I should probably try it at least once. The quinoa was just okay, not good, but not bad, and felt only lukewarm.

However it was still edible, unlike the Guinea Pig. Now I’m not saying that because I’m some sort of wimp who was grossed out by the fact that I was eating something a lot of Americans have as pets, I’m saying that because it was absolutely disgusting. Within one bite I wanted to throw up. It tasted like an oily fishy duck at first, but then simply devolved into a fatty mess in your mouth with a slimy texture. Its likely that guinea pig, when prepared correctly, is actually delicious, and that I simply had a bad experience because it was a Confit and because the restaurant had already proved itself with the quinoa to be just meh.

Soon thereafter I returned back to my room and fell fast asleep, trying to get enough rest to prepare for tomorrow’s hike.

After waking, I climbed out of bed, cleaned myself up, and headed to breakfast, hoping it would be better than last nights experience.

I decided to get some french toast, because come on, who can screw that up?

They can, that’s who.

I think it was actually less of the french toast and more the syrup which tasted like that high fructose corn syrup garbage you can grab in a wal-mart instead of some actual canadian maple syrup. Which, I guess, is understandable saying that we’re thousands of miles from canada, but still, can I please just get some basic, good, fulfilling breakfast food, like come on.

After that we met up with our new guide Elliot, who would be accompanying us all the way to machu picchu. Today we were going to do a quick tour of the valley and then go on a long hike through the mountains.

Our first stop was a small village in which the locals only spoke Quechua, the language of the Inca. There, a whole bunch of women from the village came out and try to sell us their handmade textiles, and while I would have politely declined buying anything, because we had [REDACTED] with us, we weren’t getting out of there without hundreds of dollars worth of useless textiles.

So, with our pockets sufficiently lightened, we continued onto where we would begin our hike. We started by climbing up a big hill to access some unmarked ruins at the top, and, because I’m a lazy degenerate who’s slowly losing his work ethic over time, I will likely just dump a ton of photos down with minimal text.

We then began our descent back down the hill so that we could find a good path to continue our hike on. It was there where randomly a little pitbull puppy came flopping out of nowhere, and he was very adorable.

After saying goodbye to our puppy friend we cut across the hill and began our long 12 mile hike to the nearest village where we would visit their archaeological site. It was extremely beautiful, as you will soon see.

Shortly thereafter we began to reach the outskirts of the town, and after a short lunch break, continued our long advance.

A few moments later we arrived at the ruins.

And then, being sufficiently tired from our day of adventure, we returned back the the hotel where I relaxed in the hot tub, and then, I presume, had dinner, although I have no recollection of it.

I must apologize before I end this post, as you’ve likely noticed the decrease in quality of this post. Ap tests and other assignments are completely destroying me right now, and this blog has been pushed into the background in order to keep myself afloat

Thank you for understanding,

-Sharp Out

Peru Trip: Traveling, Maido, Touring Lima

Welcome, dear traveler, to my futile attempt of starting this blog post with something original. Ah, who am I kidding, I’m not nearly motivated enough to do that.

This weeks post will be like the original ski trip, meaning it will have more then one part and will likely never be finished (sorry). Below one can find the list of, “potential” blog posts, which will become links once their respective precis has been written.

Peru Trip: Lima

Peru Trip: Sacred Valley -> Part 1, Part 2

Peru Trip: Machu Pichu Vichu Mcbichu

Peru Trip: Cusco

 Twas, the first day of spring break, and all through the house there was absolutely no-one as they had already left to catch a plane flight. Today our family was heading to LAX to get on a LATAM, which stands for something, I don’t know, Airlines flight to Lima, Peru. My father had been planning this trip for a long time, but the rest of us were pretty much unaware of what exactly we were going to be doing.

After a few hours in the hellhole that is LA traffic, we arrived at LAX and went to check in.

Shortly thereafter we went through security and arrived into the terminal. Our gate was luckily very close to the pseudo-mall inside of LAX, and we decided to go get some lunch as well as some snacks to last us the seven hour plane flight. I don’t have pictures of this, but at this point, is anyone really surprised.

After some eating, redditing, and reading, we boarded our international flight. Now, it was nothing special, but at least the television was in working order so I could entertain myself without having to watch all 22 episodes of the office I downloaded a night prior.

For the next 7 hours I sat in extreme boredom, watching movies, TV, and listening to music, which would likely be a field day for someone else, but surprisingly not for me. I can’t really explain it, but I feel that in the environment of a plane you dont really get the full enjoyment out of whatever you’re watching, as I rewatched a lot of movies that I love and they didn’t really have the same, “Umph,” that they usually have.

After we landed in Lima, we had a minor heart attack at the baggage claim because after waiting twenty minutes, our bags had not arrived, and while this was actually due to the fact that it was  12 AM in peru and they had one baggage claim worker on shift, My entire family still had PTSD from our spain trip where we had to wear the same outfits for 5 days. Eventually we were reunited with our luggage and made our way to the front of the airport, where we met with our energetic guide, Carlo, who helped us carry our bags to the van which would whisk us away to our hotel, the Belmond Miraflores Park. On the car ride there Carlo did not fail once to keep us entertained, explaining the interesting history of Lima and Peru as a whole. One of the most interesting things he told us was why every chinese restaurant in Peru was called Chifa. As it turns out, during the 1900’s thousands of chinese immigrants were brought into Peru in order to get cheap labor, just like in America, however once their work was done, the government lacked the money to pay them, and instead gave all the chinese immigrants a chunk of land in Lima, Peru, becoming the only real Chinatown located outside the United States. In order to make up for the falsely promised cash, the Chinese would set up tables outside their homes and yell a phrase that basically meant, “come and eat,” to attract customers. This phrase was misinterpreted by the peruvian population as, “Chifa,” and the name has been going ever since.

Halfway through our drive we passed a huge stone sign, which I assume has some significance due to its size, but I honestly have no idea.

Very shortly afterwards we arrived at our hotel, and I was blown away from its size and decor.

Something Straight Out of Colonial Times it Seems

Being tired enough as is, the kids and the adults separated and we all went to our respective rooms to sleep in. However before going to bed I couldn’t help but notice how freaking crazy the shower in My sister and I’s room was.

I mean, look at it! its got at least 200 holes

 After standing in awe, I felt myself passing out, and decided it was best to call it a night.

I woke up at around 9:30 and crawled out of bed to go to breakfast.

The breakfast area at the Belmond Miraflores Park was located on the top floor of the building and offered spacious views of the city of Lima, with a pool close by. Not like there was much to see, as, due to Peru’s weird climates, Lima is perpetually gray and cloudy.

Despite the nice relaxing decor, the food at this Belmond was horrendous. It seems that the decor applies to the food as well, as while it looks appetizing, it is completely inedible.

I wouldn’t even classify this monstrosity as a waffle, as it was so dense that I felt like I was eating a cake! There was no real taste besides that of dough, and their maple syrup tasted like high fructose corn syrup!

After that upset, I returned to my room to enjoy the hotels glorious wifi before we left  for our lunch.

Now, the place we were going to lunch was very special, so special in fact that we had to get our reservations 60 days ahead. We were going to Maido (まいど) a nikkei restaurant offering japanese-peruvian fusion, and is the 11th best restaurant in the entire world. We arrived at the restaurant for our 12:30 reservation and I was almost immediately blown away by their decor.

And unlike the hotel, it seemed that the food here would be just as amazing as the decor.

We decided to go for the chef’s menu, because when you’re at a top 50 restaurant you let the chef do his magic.

Another cool thing about Maido is their offerings when it comes to non-alcoholic drinks. I decided to get their herbal lemonade (the green drink below) and it was really refreshing.

While I was busy taking photos of our drinks and exploring the restaurant, our courses began to arrive.

Course 1/12: Titled, “snacks” this course featured three small bite sized delicacies that I would likel3 never put near my mouth unless they were at a restaurant such as this. I dont really want to know what was in them, but they were delicious regardless.

Course 2/13: Titled, “Poda Ceviche,” this course was nothing crazy, just your standard ceviche, definitely drawing its influence from the peru side of things, but flavorful nonetheless.

 Now it’s here, that things start to get interesting. Course 3/13: Titled, “Dim Sum,”featuring a cacao shell, filled with cream, squid, and sea snail. Not the kinda thing you would expect to see really anywhere, but like everything else, it was pulled off perfectly.

Course 4/13: Titled, “Choripan,” or as I like to call it, “what kinda trickery is this?” As you can already see it gives the illusion of being a normal hotdog topped with some onions and tomatoes, but it time for the maido signature clapback. It’s not any hotdog, it’s a fish and octopus hotdog… So yah, not really my favorite.

Course 5/13: Titled, “Nigiri,” or more commonly known as, “something that is actual recognizable.” This was really good, as is all well made nigri, and featured scallop and toro (fatty tuna) nigiri. One may notice that there is only one nigiri in the photo and that’s because the toro one had a freaking ponzu injected egg on top of it and I ate that far before any rational thinking about how I should likely take a photo took hold.

Course 6/13: “Lapas Ceviche,” or, “freaking black magic.” This was one of the best courses of the night and featured a pretty standard ceviche, but with one twist, liquid nitrogen frozen hot-sauce. See those yellow nuggets, yah, that’s actually frozen hot-sauce.

Course 7/13: “Gindara Misoyaki,” nothing really special. Just some miso marinated cod, which while not bad, it didn’t really blow any minds.

Course 8/13: “Catacaos De Camarones,” a tamale wrapped around some shrimp in some sauce. Yah thats all I’ve got to say Course 9/13: “Cassava Soba,” or exactly what it sounds and looks like. You dip some noodles in a broth, yah… . It was really good with quite a strong taste.

Courses 12 & 13: Titled, “Reef,” and, ‘Mussel,” these two courses had me thinking, wait, are we sure this isn’t just the world 11th best dessert place. The design of these two dishes was fantastic with me being pleasantly surprised by how well it looked and tasted. Everything in these two images was edible (well except the bowl and plate, of course), and I mean everything. the mussel shell? Chocolate. The coral? Sugar.

Oh, and for anyone wondering where courses 10 & 11 went, shhhhhhhhh.

We took a step outside the restaurant and were immediately met by this woman, whose name I have totally forgotten, who was going to take us on a tour around Lima. She showed us the city’s various districts, but the main piece de resistance was Lima’s Plaza Mayor where we were able to see building inspired by various european nations, Spain most prominently.

After that tour we returned to the hotel and my parents went off for a walk around the city while I decided to remain in my room. Well many of you are likely horrified by the fact that I didn’t take every opportunity possible to experience peru, I always feel the need, regardless of the location to find some time in a day to just unwind in complete social isolation.

A few hours later we headed out to dinner, to a nice restaurant along the beach called Cala.

It offered some really nice peruvian dishes, and I decided on the lomo saltado, which is basically just peruvian stir fry, and is something that is good regardless of where you are in peru. I also decided to get a tuna roll to start, which is really weird, but the seafood was really fresh at cala so just went for it.

The food was really good, especially my mother’s appetizer, which I likely ate a little bit more then should would like of. However both my mother and father complained about the food the second we got out to restaurant, which surprised me, but it likely because they had compared it in their minds to Maido.

We returned to the hotel and tucked into bed, getting a good night of sleep to prepare for tomorrow’s travel day as we made our way to the sacred valley.

Ski Trip II: 2 Electric 2 Boogalo

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Well, it’s that time of week agian, dear readers, where I pump out pages worth of filler content in order to temporary fill the empty void of my self-appreciation. Not like, it matters, of course, because to be fair I get more instagram likes then views per month, social media at its finest I assume.

As the title suggests, this is the second part of the second ski trip, (lets just pretend the first ski trip never happened, okay because god knows if I will ever be bothered with writing more unread nonsense). I must apologize ahead of time because the amount of effort placed into this post will be just as little as the last two posts. Of course this is for a good reason, as I have been, “Extremely Busy” (I.E. I’m a dirty procrastinator whose slowly collapsing work ethic has diminsed to a new low).

Nonetheless, I should likely stop insulting myself in order to distance my humor from that of Amy Schumer’s (dear god that Netflix Special), and move on to the actual content.

Todays plan was quite interesting compared to those before it. We had planned to check out a new mountain around the solitude area, Snowbird. However it is not as simple as it sounds as today was sunday, and I had school tomorrow. Adding to this complication was the fact that the lodge in which we were staying had it checkout time at 11am. So we decided to pack up everything besides ski clothes and one change of clothes in order to ski a full day and make it back on time for the plane flight.

After packing and loading up the car, we drove the short distance to Snowbird a mountain that is supposedly much larger then solitude. First impressions were good as they seemed to have a ton a traffic from boarders and skiers alike, and the tempature there was much lower then yesterday’s slush fest. We pulled into their quaint little breakfast place at the Snowbird Center, and like the montonmous cavemen we are, all got breakfast burritos. Now, due to my sheer incompatance (which is to be expected at this point honestly), I didnt take any photos. As a standin, enjoy this stock photo with the watermark left in, because theres no way that I could ever be dedicated enough to pay for this garbage.

“Accurate” Representation of Breakfast

Moving on, we grabbed our lift tickets and rentals agian and headed towards one of the two lifts from the snowbird center. While there was infact a tram to the top of the mountain, as to be expected on one as large as this, it was extremely inefficent.  Unlike every other ski tram in existance, there only existed two cars on this tram, unlike the dozens of small gondolas usually present. The lift we chose instead took us to something we had been interested in before seeing it, the peruvian tunnel. Apparently around 20 years ago, some total dimwit thought it was worth 50 million dollars to bore a tunnel straight through one side of the mountain to the other in order to make it easier to get to the backcountry.

While it was interesting, and completely unique, it left me with many uncertainies. I havent got the faintest idea why in the world they decided to call it the  peruvian tunnel, as there is no real influence of any culture on the tunnel, especially not that of peru, saying that im currently there right now. Another thing that confused me is why it was played off online as very interesting and informative, when all there was inside was some blurry framed photos and old mining equipment lying around, all of which you had no time to really understand as the magic carpet of the tunnel whipped you out the other end.

Once we emerged from the tunnel we encountered what must have been the main pull for snowbird, their backcountry. Just from the views alone you could tell it was gonna be great.

Or, as we soon found out, it turns out views alone meant nothing. Conditions, like in solitude, were still horrendous, just at the opposite end, as instead of turing into mashed potatos, the snow was always uncontrollable amounts of icy. It seemed the mountain cattered to a bunch of filty casuals as well, as it featured such great skiing classics such as countless unavoidable green catracks and mindnumbingly flat blues. Every run we did felt just okay as it seemed the only real appeals of this mountain was its countless double black chutes, all of which were roped off. As I soon realized, it felt as if the entire mountain was just a buildup to the actual run, like the flat run up right before your drop into a steep run. As the day went on, we all got increasingly pissed off looking a run that simply must not even exist. You would think there would be one fun run on this mountain, saying that its like three times the size of solitude, but alas you would be wrong. It seems solitude is such a great mountain because of its small side, as in order to make up for it all of its runs have to be the best they could possibly be, like a best of album of all the runs at a large mountain. We soon took a lift to the peak in order to see if the front side was any better, and to try to calm down with the help of a snack. Once agian, the views remained the only redeeming feature of the mountain.

Much to our dismay, the front side did not fuel our optimism as we had hoped. To the left mouguls, to the right catracks, to the center icy mouguly catracks. We had gotten so annoyed by this time that we decided to go find their only terrian park and just hang out their for the rest of the day, because they cant screw that up, right? Wrong. Another thing ive forgotten to mention is how flawed their entire mountain is when it comes to signs, as they seem to be almost nonexistanst, so unless you pull out a map every five seconds, you will never, and I mean never reach where you want to go. In our futile attempts to reach the terrain park we encountered mouguls and catracks, litterally the most cancerous objects created. Eventually we reached the terrain park, and did a few runs on it before we decided to call it a day and try to make it back to the main snowbirs center. As expected, if it was hard to get to the terrain park, it would be just as hard to get back. After following the single sign to a T, we rounded a corner and found ourselves at the base of a 200 foot hill, that we were expected to walk, because actual design sense seemed to bypass whoever created this snow covered pile of garbage.

After walking for a while, we returned to the center, repacked, changed, and headed off towards the airport, ready to get the heck out of there. 

Now, our already late fight had gotten delayed, meaning we didnt take off till around 10:00 PM. Most people would be dismayed by this, but I was honestly glad, as it gave me time to finish up my history notes in the buisness lounge in the airport. 

And now, I draw this post to a close, mainly because nothing else happened, and also because its like 12:30 and I want to be done with this.

Ski Trip II: Electric Boogaloo

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Welp, It finally happened. It appears that before I could finish the Epic Saga of the 5 day Ski Trip, I went on another one. But, is that truly a bad thing? about 90% of those posts are complete filler, and I doubt there is eve a speck of enjoyment that comes out of them. As for this event, I plan to do what I should have done with the last one, just make it all one post, well actually two posts, because next week is spring break and I still need a blog post.

Moving on to some “actual content” (Oh please), This trip started off differently from any others before it, because it backpacked off of another trip, the MAD Sophomore Retreat. The retreat took place from Wednesday to Friday, while the ski trip occurred from Friday to Sunday. I dont plan to discuss the retreat in detail any time soon, mainly because I was not able to take any photos, because do to some garbage reasoning, we were not allowed to have our phones during the retreat, which really sucks because the retreat took place in Canyons National Park, where there was a lot of snow

But regardless, on Friday morning, my father, who had driven 6 hours just to get to canyons park, loaded me and my friend Walker into the car, and we began the long haul towards the Burbank Bop Hope Airport. I lack photos of this drive, which I hope can be excused by you dear reader (I mean its really not your choice), as I was just recently reunited with the magic of technology, and I had quite a large amount of stuff to catch up on. The road trip was uneventful, and after a few hours of Redditing, Youtubing, Netflixing, and Zeldaing, we arrived at Bob Hope Airport. After some more lollygagging and phone watching, we got in our plane and took off towards the exact same destination as last time, Salt Lake City. Much like the last time, I once again tried to take a nice photo of the horizon through the plane window, but because it seems my phone doesn’t understand how to correctly focus, you will have to enjoy the photo below instead.

Curse you phone camera!

We landed in Salt lake around 6ish and decided to get some dinner in Salt Lake City before heading into the desolate woods that are solitude and Briton. We decided to stop for my dad and I’s favorite type of food, shabu shabu, which is basically just dipping thin slices of meat into boiling water and then into sauces. We tend to get shabu shabu when on trips because the only shabu place in Santa Barbara is a disgrace to shabu-kind (Seriously, dont eat there, it will give you food poisoning). The restaurant we went to was really good, but it seems my hands couldn’t keep still when doing the photo, so now nobody gets to see anything.

Soon thereafter, we arrived back at Solitude and walked into another small apartment, but this time I least I would get a real bed.

After getting set up, we all settled down and ended the first night with some quality netflix (sadly deborah’s netflix was not here, RIP).

The next morning I awoke well rested, something that is often a rarity in the alpines. Soon afterwards, we all suited out and treaded the very short distance into the village where we got ourselves a quick breakfast before hitting the slopes.The place we stopped at was a very small casual place in the middle of the village at Solitude, that, while being advertised as a pizza and ice cream shop, was more well known for its simple cheap breakfasts. We knew what to expect from such a place and got their breakfast burritos, which while nothing to talk about, served their mundane purpose of giving us enough energy to propel ourselves down a hill at ludicrous speeds without dying of malnutrition on the way.

After breakfast, My dad and Walker went to the information desk to get rentals and lift tickets. Walker simply needed boots as he had his own board, while my father was the exact opposite, having ski boots, but lacking any skis to go with them. Well, actually, my father did have skies, which he payed an extra 30 dollars to bring with him. But, being a Queener, he didn’t actually bother to check any of the conditions for this weekend before we had already arrived. And thus begins, and ends, the story of how my father bought $500 dollar powder skies for one of the slushiest weekends in history.

As one is to expect, the first thing we noticed while we headed up the Apex lift, was the weather. In our very limited layers of just undershirt/underwear and Ski jackets/pants, we soon found ourselves overheating, having to go much of the day with our jackets completely unzipped, which completely sucked when you would fall, extremely common with the snow conditions. However whenever you would go on a lift you would become cold almost immediately as the wind literally whipped you while you sit stationary in a lift.

However regardless of the snow or weather conditions, it was almost worth it, simply for the undisturbed views of a sunny day.

Moving on from the histrionics, the day itself wasn’t really that bad. The first few runs, while icy, were extremely fun and fast, giving an experience I wasn’t really used to in solitude. This was because in order to make up for the conditions, almost every nice run was groomed, something that did not occur at all last time we were there, likely in order to keep the powder fresh. My favorite run of the day was undoubtedly the first time we went down the newly groomed Honeycomb. We completely flew down the entire mountain, at speeds I had never reached before, all while feeling completely stable.

A hilarious moment of the day was after we had done out 7th or 8th run of the day when I asked walker what time it was as I exclaimed that we should probably stop for a rest in a bit. After learning that we had literally only been out for around an hour and I half, I came to the realization that without people like Joe and my sister who you constantly need to wait for, you can just fly through things that would have taken three times as long.

We stopped at the roundhouse for lunch, as it is honestly the only decent place to get food on the mountain without the need to chug a bottle of pepto bismol afterwards.

From there on out, the quality of fun deteriorated. Eventually the snow became so slushy that you would become borderline uncontrollable while going down it. I remember at one moment, even though I literally had not turned at all down the entire slope, I came to a sudden stop on an incline, unable to move, even though my board was facing directly down the hill.

Because those conditions were bumming us all out, we soon decided to call it a day and headed back to the room where I ended the day with additional netflix and some AP world history notes, a Sharp Queener Classic™.

I looked forward to tomorrow, when we would check out a new and even bigger mountain in utah, Snowbird.

And thus concludes part one of two of another pointless series that I likely will never get around to finishing, because to be honest I’ve said that I will come back to so many things at this rate.

Let me know if anyone actually reads these, because currently I’m starting to believe that I’m simply just talking to a cardboard cutout of Danny Devito, by sending me some incoherent nonsense in the comments below, a simple aslkjh;fg;hlasdtgglhkadgka will do just fine.