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I live well at the lodge, with healthy food, pretty walks, energizing yoga and sweet rest. I can sit down with a cup of homegrown chamomile tea while watching the mountain life pass by. One morning the farmers and herders are walking up the hill in their skirts and hats to plant some trees. The people here in the Andes seem so responsible. They live close to nature in mutual dependency, which demands that they give back to the land. Growing is a direct form of survival. I mainly chop things down to firewood and burn it. The warmth that it brings in front of the fireplace or in the sauna is wonderful, but all my tree-responsibility is going up in smoke.

I try to compensate this destruction by growing vegetables and herbs. I bring some broccoli babies to the garden, sow little lines of lettuce and put some parsley in the ground. It is all very satisfying, to kneel down by the wet soil with dirt under my finger nails and rubber boots on my feet while trying to make things grow. I think about becoming a farmer one fine day, creating food like my neighbours here in the mountains.

One day I travel to the other side of the mountain range, to the ancient and archeological city of Chavin with my American Colleague. She has been there before to participate in traditional plant ceremonies, using the hallucinogenic San Pedro Cactus. She says that it showed her the complexity of the world, with all the energy that create and connects everything. I do not dare to try the complexity-cactus, but I can use my reason to understand unity, how everything is an eco-system. And when I sit down with my cup of chamomile tea here in the Andes, all my senses and feelings tell me that the nature is gorgeous and golden if we let it grow.




  1. Nicolai Michel Saturday, April 23, 2011, at 12:37 AM

    Did you go to the museum in Chavin?

  2. Nicolai Michel Saturday, April 23, 2011, at 12:39 AM

    Regarding the environmental consciousness of the Peruvians, I am more skeptical. Outside the desert and jungle it seems very difficult to find any wilderness in Peru. There are fields, pastures, roads, people, and/or cows everywhere…

  3. Nicolai Michel Saturday, April 23, 2011, at 12:47 AM

    …and the waterways are full of sewage and garbage. Perhaps 10% of vehicles are NOT spewing toxic smoke into the air. There are few trees, and the ones that are there are mostly non-endemic eucalyptus.
    Peru is the only country that still has legal logging of mahogany trees, destroying indigenous communities in the process. Lax regulations and/or a lack of enforcement and/or corruption allow countless mining companies to permanently pollute the water…

  4. Hanna Saturday, April 23, 2011, at 8:04 AM

    Yes Nicolai, those are sad facts, but I have noticed a big difference up here in the Andes with less garbage and less pollution. When it comes to the environmental policies on a state level I guess we will simply have to see who wins the election and see if there will be any improvements.

    I did not go to the museum, but apparently it is very good and they currently have an exhibition on dinosaurs. Let me know if you are coming back to the Cordillera.

  5. JIM Saturday, April 30, 2011, at 10:13 AM

    Hej Hanna! Även du är en vacker blomma i dina gulfärgade glas och behöver få växa fritt. Hoppas att regnperioden är över och att du kan sätta på hjälm och trampa vidare. Må så gott.
    Kramar JIM

  6. Hanna Thursday, May 5, 2011, at 3:42 PM

    Tack, regnperioden verkar vara över och snart trampar jag vidare genom Perus natur.

  7. Anna S. W. Sunday, May 8, 2011, at 7:44 AM

    Häpnadsväckande vackra foton och vyer! Härligt att du snart kan trampa vidare! KRAM

  8. Deva Munay Monday, May 9, 2011, at 4:17 PM

    I love it all!!! thanks for posting and yes, what a sweet read it is. my apologies for being so overly sensitive. you are grace incarnate!!

    miss you and love you so! xoxoxo

  9. Hanna Wednesday, May 11, 2011, at 4:48 PM

    Miss you back, love you back. You are grace.

  10. sebastien Monday, July 11, 2011, at 4:15 AM

    Hi Hanna,

    Just wanted to congratulate you on your blog, your nice stories and beautiful pictures. We are about to go down the same road (but only starting in Perù) and we are already there when we read you.

    Good luck on the road

  11. hanna Monday, July 11, 2011, at 8:35 PM

    Thanks Sebastien, the stories are so happy to be read and the photos are so happy to be viewed. I hope you enjoy Peru as much as I have and that I get to meet you somewhere on the road.

    Happy cycling

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