Surviving the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, part 3

This is part 3 out of 3 of my four-day journey to Machu Picchu along the Inca Trail.  Read part 1 here, and part 2 here.

Tweet this out: We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us

It wasn’t a majestic sunrise. There were no bright rays of light shinning through the clouds down on the path ahead of us. No red tones of ocre fading into the blue of the receding night sky. No clouds reflecting the light of the sun. It was just the light of day gradually replacing the darkness of night. The sun burned the way it has done for billions of years.

This was the same sun that the Incas once revered. The same sun that sustained their life as it sustains our own.

It was a morning like any other over five hundred years ago.

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Surviving the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, Part 2

This is part 2 out of 3 for my blog series on my journey to Machu Picchu on the Inca Trail.  Read part 1 here.

As I sit in front of my touchscreen desktop computer, the aroma of coffee lulling me and enticing me, I cannot help but feel grateful that I was able to make such an adventure come true.

Surviving the Inca Trail was not just about hiking for four days on my way to a world-famous destination.  It was a pilgrimage through the last few remnants of a life where mother nature rules.  There was no iPhone tower to check my Facebook feed (which I have quit checking for the most part), the bathroom facilities were painful to look at, and not to mention the rain, the bugs, and the cold.  There was little of the artificiality that I am used to in Houston where at the touch of a button the cold is replaced by heat and the heat is replaced by cold.

If there is one thing I learned in Peru it is to be grateful for the life that I live.  The memory of the trail might be hazy in my mind, and yet I can still feel what it was like to walk those ancient steps, to breathe the fresh Andean air, and to move through clouds.

After all, who doesn’t dream of walking on the clouds when they were a child?

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Surviving the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, part 1

The Inca Trail, depending on which company you hire to undertake the journey, is a 26 mile (43 km), 4 day and 3 night camping and hiking trip across the Andean mountains on the way to Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas.  When I found out that this trail existed I knew I had to take it and that there would be no other way to make my way to Machu Picchu.  Below you will find my impressions and thoughts on having hiked the Inca Trail in October of 2015.

Enjoy 🙂

I remember brown peaks covered in snow revealed themselves through the clouds.  I am not sure whether the peaks were that tall or we were flying that low.  Whatever the case may have been, I recall a headache since we left the airport in Lima where we “slept” because we did not see a point to getting a hotel for our six-hour layover.  I also recalled a movie in which a plane crashes somewhere in the mountains and the passengers turn to eating one another to survive–fortunately this was not our fate.

So it was that below us, in all of their grandiosity, were the many stories of the Quechua.  The excitement of the journey boiled deep within my soul, for I was about to join hundreds of other hiking enthusiasts in one of the most outstanding experiences of my life across the Peruvian jungle.  I was about to make my dream come true and hike the Inca Trail to the Lost City of the Incas, Machu Picchu.

Andes Mountains on the way to Cusco - Surviving the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

Above all, In approximately 48 hours I was about to wonder “what the f*ck did I get myself into?

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3 Steps To Get Back On Track After Your Dreams Don’t Come True

I want to travel the world.  That is most certainly one of my dreams, goals, and aspirations in life.  The Anthropologist in me wants to see how other people live and see the world.  But sometimes, just sometimes, there is more to seeing the world than traveling and there is more to life than chasing after dreams.  My recent trip to Anacortes, WA in which my dream didn’t come true is a testament to it.  So, if you have ever wondered what to do if your dreams don’t come true, then stick around…

***This post was written in September 2015 upon my return from Washington state.

Well, here I am. I am sipping on a warm ginger-lime-honey concoction that has kept me more or less sane for the last 48 hours since my allergy symptoms went out of control.

Between coughing out a lung, emptying every Kleenex box within reach, and the nasty pressure in my sinuses, I have come to question whether my latest vacation has been worth it.

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Criticizing Others: A Surefire Way For People Not To Like You (And How To Stop Doing It)

We live in a crazy world.

A Hot Mess of a world to be more precise.

Donald Trump runs for president and Kanye saying he will do so for 2020.  Not to mention Deez Nuts.

The Kardashians making headlines and Syrian refuges get tripped by evil reporters.

WTF is going on? 

How did we get to this point and how do we get out?

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This Little Known Mistake Could Ruin Your Friendships (And How To Avoid It)

We all want deep, fulfilling friendships in our lives.  But if you have ever spent a Friday night eating take-out (alone) and wondered why your Facebook feed is brimming with pictures of people having way too much fun while your phone is not ringing (is this thing dead or something?  Maybe youneed to charge it) you may be making a mistake in how you interact with your friends.

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Is Your Identity Sabotaging Your Habit Formation Efforts?

Last week I wrote about how writer’s blog is a problem of identity. This week, I wanted to tie habit formation back into the equation, because in the end, writer’s block is a problem characterized by lack of writing. And by now, we all know that if you want to be a writer, then you ought to write.  The problem is that you may have not found an answer to how to form a habit.

This week I wanted to spice things up a little bit, however, and bring in some expert advice from around the net to illustrate the issue of identity. The point I want to make is to illustrate how our sense of identity sabotages our attempts at habit formation.

Before we go any further into the relationship between habit formation and identity, however, I find that we need to define identity. To understand what I mean by identity, I thought I would share a book review by Maria Popova from

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The Writer’s Block Cure Simplified

Oh, writer’s block.  One of the many maladies of the human condition for which we have found no official cure.  Writer’s block may not be as dangerous as our latest media sensation, Ebola, and yet, were it not for having found a cure for his own writer’s block, the world may not have experienced the beauty of Shakespeare’s own literary genius.  It goes without saying that everyone has their own zone of genius, and finding a writer’s block cure is not as complicated as it may seem.

If you are a writer you know this feeling as well. Writer’s block, I have found, is a combination of the yucky feeling of inadequacy and the thoughts that gladly accompany such state. It stops you on your tracks and acts as a sort of boulder on the path of words that would otherwise flow naturally out of your mind and into (digital) paper.  Writer’s block, left unchecked, can, and will, destroy any piece of coherent writing before it has materialized itself. The desperation for a cure is palpable.

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Why Is It Important to Have a Writing Habit In Place?

I’m really big in understanding how the mind works.  Turns out, despite the vast diversity of the thoughts we all have on a day to day basis, our minds are made of predictable structures. One such structure is how habits form.

I wrote about 10 writing strategies that I have found have helped me create a writing habit, but I didn’t go into the specifics of how I got where I am today–that is, a consistent weekly blogging routine with blog posts averaging 900-1000 words, and a 40 thousand word rough draft for a book.

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Are You Leveraging Your Time To The Max? If You Aren’t, You Need This iPhone App

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of WonderApps for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

Time is money, we all know that.  But when you are an entrepreneur and you are trying to get a business off the ground, your time is one of your most valuable resources.  Of course, it goes without saying that if you want to be successful, you must learn to leverage and make the most of your time.

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