A night in Atuncolla

We met our family who live outside a village called Atuncolla. Their son, his girlfriend and her daughter were visiting so we were a nice group of people. We took a walk through the fields and to the mountain. We could see the archeological site from there too.

They told us the legend of the creation of the lake which was really interesting. It was said that before the lake, there was a village made of gold. One day, the villagers were celebrating and a man went up to one of the maids who was working very hard and told her to leave and to not look back at the village. So she ran away and when she arrived on the top of the hill, she turned around and looked at the village. Because she did not listen, there was a storm which drowned the village and created the lake. Of course, this is just the legend that people tell. 

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We played with the alpacas before dinner. Afterwards, we had a fire and talked with them, told stories. It was very nice, this family was so genuine and nice we loved our time with them. I asked them if they made an oven in the ground to cook potatoes because I had made one in 2009 near Cusco. They were so surprised I knew about this little oven and they were so happy that they wanted to make it the next morning before we left!

The little oven is called HUATIA, which is made out of the earth. They use animal excrements as the “charcoal” and dried quinoa branches as the wood. Then, once the oven is warm enough, the potatoes are thrown in and the oven is destroyed. The potatoes cook like this for about 30 minutes. Then you peel the potatoes with your hands and eat them with cheese! It is so delicious, especially with the wide variety and different potatoes they have! We also dressed the alpacas with the typical equipment when people went on journeys and we walked them around. The 3 little baby alpacas followed us the whole way, it was so cute!

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