In Peru, todo es possible, nada es seguro.

It’s a popular phrase here in South America: Everything is possible, but nothing is certain! OG Peru Mind and Body lived this motto the past four weeks, soaking up as much of the Peruvian culture (and Andean sunshine) as we could and spending the past two weeks completing our major project in the small mountain village of Chahuay. After working with the community day in and day out, we successfully refurbished and added on to a children’s park, visited centers for young children and new mothers, and formed a bond with a community that truly became a home.

Inauguration of the children's park at Chahuay, Peru
Inauguration of the children’s park in Chahuay.

After work we set off for our vacation time and nope, that didn’t include any relaxing moments on a gorgeous beach. Instead, how about four days trekking 60 km at up to 4,600m to one of the highest Wonders of the World? We biked, rafted, and climbed through the Andes to arrive at Machu Picchu, the lost city of the Incas. An amazing way to finish off our time together as a group!

Operation Groundswell Peru in Machu Picchu
Team OG Peru Mind and Body at Machu Picchu

From our beginnings in the coastal capital of Lima and up into the Andes, from adjusting to altitude to lugging 30 lb sacks of dirt together, we have become more than just a tight group! For the time being though we’ve gone our separate ways as last Saturday was the beginning of our Independent Travel Time (ITT).

For the next week the ladies have spread across the country (and it’s borders!) to explore the richness and diversity of Peru! Courtney has returned back to the States to finish her work term, but was lucky to have time to finish our volunteer projects! Danielle, Laura, Steph and Rachel  are already in Bolivia. They can be found on the beaches of Isla del Sol in Lake Titicaca. At over 3,800m, it is the highest navigable lake in the world! Carol and Sofea have also headed for Titicaca but will be exploring the Peruvian side and the man-made islands of the Uro peoples. Anik, Monique and Becca are currently southwest in Arequipa. Surrounded by volcanoes, rivers fit for rafting, and the first and second deepest canyons in the world, it is more than just a lovely colonial city.

In about a week, we all head to the coast for our reunion in Huacachina for some sandboarding outside the desert oasis! Excited to explore but just as eager to reunite again and share stories of our personal adventures!

For the rest of you out there, just a reminder that cell phones in Bolivia don’t work, but trip leaders are in contact with participants on a regular basis and are still available to the ladies!

Hoping this finds everyone back home happy and healthy. Thank you again to all who contributed to our fundraising and made all of our work possible! You are truly part of the journey with us!

Hasta pronto amigos!

OG Peru: Mind and Body Crew