Each year in June, the people of the comunidad campesina of Huinchiri, along with villagers from three other nearby communities, rebuild a suspension bridge across the canyon of the upper Río Apurimac. The bridge is a keshwa chaca made of ropes hand woven of qqoya grass, a type of Andean bunchgrass. A steel girder bridge crosses the canyon a short distance upstream from the keshwa chaca, so it is not necessary that this rope bridge be rebuilt for any present-day transportation purposes. And yet the Quechua people continue to build the bridge annually, as apparently they have done since Inka times. It is their custom, and by maintaining the bridge they honor their ancestors and Pachamama.
“Some of the mightiest and most impressive Roman Bridges, which fall broadly into two groups, are to be found in Spain. On the one hand there is the long low bridge of many nearly equal arches acros a broad river valley. Of this kind are the bridges of Salamanca, Cardova, and merida. As a contrast there is themajestic majestic lofty bridge of few and unequal arches thrown across a wide rocky gorge (H. Shirley 21).”