I had the pleasure of meeting Oscar during my recent trip to Mexico City. He was born and raised in Mexico and currently works as a professional translator. He met me at the airport, accompanied me to my airbnb, and hung out with me the rest of the day. I learned so much about the city and about his travels as well. But the best story he shared with me was about his life-changing trip to Peru last summer…
Was this your first time visiting Peru?
Yes, it was.
How long were you there for?
For 10 days.
Did you travel with anybody, if so, who?
I traveled with my boyfriend.
What was one thing you were looking forward to the most about your trip?
So many things, but if I can only mention one, then it would be being at Machu Picchu.
Was there anything you wanted to do or see but didn’t get to?
Yes, go to Lake Titicaca and Nazca lines.
Name one thing that surprised you the most about Peru.
The Vinicunca or the 7 color mountain. It’s just one of those places that takes your breath away. It’s a 3-hour walk till the place, 2,500 miles above sea level, under the sun. In the end you can’t really feel your feet, but it’s just so rewarding to arrive there. You feel like youre on the top of the world.
Favorite food you ate.
Alpaca. I know how that sounds. I had my reservations because they’re so cute, but people recommended it a lot, and when in Rome… It was simply delicious. Oh and their wheat beer is so yummy too!
Favorite thing you bought.
An alpaca sweater. It’s so warm and comfy!
Did you encounter any mishaps/problems during your trip?
To take the bus from Cuzco to Machu Picchu, we had to go to the Santiago bus terminal. When we arrived there, around 7 women working for different bus companies started to yell at me to go with them, grab me by my clothes and started to pull me in every single direction simultaneously. I felt like a toy. Luckily, they stopped after a while, when I told them I wasn’t going to buy anything from them.
What was your favorite experience of the whole trip?
Getting engaged at the top of the Machu Picchu mountain.
How did he propose to you?
There’s this trek to the highest mountain in Machu Picchu, so we got our tickets and got up there. The view there was mesmerizing. You could see the whole valley and the river crossing through the mountains underneath the clouds. And the archaeological site looked so small. So we were there, just catching our breath for having hiked up there. Suddenly, I turned to look at him and he had two rings in his hand. He gave me a letter and when I finished reading it, all he asked was: “Do you want to?” and of course I said yes. We hugged and kissed, while everyone was watching and smiling.
How long have you guys been together at this point?
A little over two years.
Did you have any idea he was going to ask you to marry him during this trip?
Not at all. I wanted to ask him to marry me in December in another trip, but he just got ahead.
Were there a lot of tears involved?
Rather than tears, there were lots of smiles and shivers of excitement. I couldn’t really believe that was actually happening.
Was there any special reason why he chose Machu Picchu as the setting for the proposal?
He wanted to do it in one of the Seven Wonders, so it was just perfect.
When and where will the wedding be held?
Spring next year in Mexico in a former hacienda.
Any tips or recommendations for anyone planning to visit Peru?
If you love ecotourism, Peru is the place for you. Buy your Machu Picchu tickets ahead because they run out really quickly. Don’t rent a car, Peru’s roads are really curvy and unpredictable, so let the experts handle that part. If you’re not used to high altitudes, drink coca tea or buy pills for mountain sickness. You should definitively visit Cusco (it’s an open-air museum), the Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu and the Rainbow mountain. And finally, enjoy, it’s a marvelous country.