This morning we departed from Tucuman with our rented car heading the Tafí valley. The morning was grey and cloudy when we arrived to our first stop, the ruins of a jesuitic mision in Lulas. On the way, thousand of hectars of sugar cane were being croped by the locals using giant "machetes" ... it seem that technology didn´t reach this lost place yet.
As the morning pass the clouds dissapeared leaving a blue sky with a shinny sun. We pass through the Natural Reserve of Los Sosas, and incredible tropical forest that leaded us to the Monument of the indians. From there we moved to the Tafí valley and reached El Mollar, a very little town with many many menhires, gathered from all the valleys around. Some of them were carved and really nice. There we ate two very tipical plates, the "humita", a kind of paste made of corns and vegetables, and "lucro", a`potage made of beef, legumes, vegetables, potates... they were very good and only costed 5€!!!!! both !!!!! This countryside is soooo cheap... some time.
We moved foward to Tafí del valle, the neighbour town were we visited some more jesuitic ruins.. theye were very efficient and in 300 years they constructed thousands of small misions where indians were "converted" from being sauvages to proper cristians...ya ya
We continued driving trhough an incredible landscape were the only thing you could hear was the silence of the hills and the only feeling was that time had stop.
After a while we arrived to the ruis of the Quilmes city. The quilmes were an indian tribe that resisted the spanih for 150 years. However ther were finally defeated and all the population (a total of 5000) were "deported" to Buenos Aires. They walked for 7 months and most of them died of starvation. Only 500 reached buenos aires.
How do you thing I felt when a little indian was telling me (Cris)this story??? spanish... we are crap.
Well the city was huge, and the view from the top of the hill, were the chaman lived was impressive. Our indian guide was not very happy when he discovered we were not the tipical lazy tourist but we wanted to climb to the top to have a better view. We didn´t seem very happy either when Mihai decided to take a shortcut trhough a steep hill to see some graffities made by the Quilmes indian. In fact, I was not very happy either!!
But at the end the litle indian took as to the place where some tombs had been excavated and let us to pick from the floor some painted ceramic pieces from the indians funerary vases. I was sooo happy! Now I have ceramic from the Quilmes indians and the micenian greeks!!!
Now we are in Cafayate and tomorrow.... we will see.