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Part 2 (back to Part 1)

We wave as Jose Antonio and Johan drive away in a taxi with Sarita strapped on top. This is her final leg on a long journey from the past to her future home in a deep freeze at Catholic University. Our own journey to the mountain, piecing together this puzzle of the highest form of sacrifice in Inca culture, has brought us closer to her world. We climbed over the same stone surfaces and leaned against the same boulders that Sarita's ceremonial party rested on as they built the tombs and placed the very offerings that we so painstakingly unearthed. The cold and lonely summit of Sara Sara is no different today than it was when Sarita was taken there and sacrificed to the mountain in the 1500s.

image of mountaintop vista As Sarita's taxi disappears amidst the other cars on the road, I silently hope that her journey from the world of the Inca into our own will prove worthwhile to science and to our understanding of the Inca. What will we learn now from the artefacts that were buried with her? In the months to come, when she is finally unwrapped, will we find more clues to help us understand the final days of her sacrifice on Sara Sara?

image of girl in red hat Check back in the months ahead to find out.

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