Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Peru- Day 1- People, perro, and poo

A lot can change in a day. We woke up in  Jackson Hole on Sunday and were in Lima Peru in time for bed on Monday. We luckily had uneventful flights, but both the Horsleys and Paul's did not. The Paul's had a flight cancelled, but were able to reschedule so they arrived only an hour later than originally scheduled. Emily and Rick weren't so lucky- due to an airline error, they arrived 12 hours later. Disaster averted, but still such a bummer!

We are staying in a 3 bedroom condo in a section of Lima called Mira Flores. It is right on the cliffs over looking the Pacific Ocean.  It is cloudy and gray, and apparently Lima is like this 80% of the year, but this didn't stop the surfers out this morning. 

Our tour guide Jose and driver Jorge, from Haku Tours, picked us up this morning. We had a "reality tour" of Lima scheduled for the full day. We started with an authentic breakfast at a corner counter- sandwiches and jugo (juice). They had around 102 combinations of blended fresh juices. We got it to go and headed to see the shantytowns of Lima. 

We drove 45 minutes south of the town to an area called Via El Salvador. I don't really have the words to explain what we saw, but it was brown and buildings for as far as I could see.  We went to a local open air market and samples fruits and food we haven't seen before. The people were friendly and engaging and made us wish we spoke Spanish. 

After the market we headed further into the hills to see where people lived. Everywhere we went we had constant company- dogs. Tons of dogs. And if there are a lot of dogs there is even more poo!! It was a skill to walk on the dirt streets and not step in a bomb. 
It was humbling and eye opening. Our guide was Incan and had grown up in the shantytown we were touring. He now speaks 4 languages and travels the world giving tours. He was very smart and gave great insight into life in the shantytowns. 
We stopped for lunch where Rick and Emily joined us. We then headed into the old city center of Lima, where we saw lots of old stuff! The catacombs under the Cathedral de San Francisco were ... memorable. 
Lima is a huge city of 11 million people. We always love seeing other cultures and cities and how they manage all those people. 

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