03 August, 2004

Oh, I could never pull a Green Acres....

Cause I would just miss the city way too much.

After leaving the internet café in Chiclayo, I decided to walk around for a bit. They have this cool little walkway with statues of the nine Muses, and it was fun to walk around that and see all the kids playing in the park at the end of the walkway. After another half hour or so of wandering around, my bookbag (in which I had stuffed everything I was taking with me to Lima) became way too heavy and even though the bus wasnt leaving for another four hours, I parked myself in front of the TV in the bus station and waited my time out there. Unfortunately, during one of the more interesting episodes of "Mujer: Casos de la Vida Real" I had ever seen, the TV shut off, and I returned to reading Francis Fukayama. Finally, after an hour or so they fixed the TV and I returned to rotting my brain with junk...well, at least I was improving my spanish.

Ilana and her boyfriend arrived around 8, which was nice as I really needed the company (we were going on the same bus). We chatted and gossiped, and I heard some really interesting chisme about some of the people in our group at Moro. We finally boarded the bus around 8:45, and ended up not leaving the station until 9, fully a half hour after we were supposed to. We were taking Linea VIP, one of the better bus lines as their seats are big and comfy and nearly go flat when you push them back; dinner and breakfast are also provided, which is better than anything I had when traveling by bus in México. They also play movies, but unfortunately it was some crazy movie in Spanish and as there were no spanish subtitles to read (which is what they usually have if the movie is in English) nor was the volume loud enough to hear it, I popped the Peruvian equivalent of valium (very helpful for when trying to sleep on a bus, its nearly impossible any other way, as the bus takes the most craziest turns anywhere careening along the highway) and thankfully fell asleep pretty quickly, and stayed asleep except for those few minutes when I woke up to change positions.

Upon our arrival in Lima, there was a cab waiting for me to take me to Mafe's house. When I got there, we chilled for a bit, exchanged gossip and ate breakfast. Her house is really posh and supercool, as it not only comes equipped with cable but also internet. We turned on HBO and "Riding in Cars with Boys" was on...I had seen that movie twice before but only up to a certain point. So we sat around and watched it as I was dying to see the ending before leaving for the city center. Mafe then took me on a tour of central Lima, and she was the best tour guide I have ever had. We went to this one church that had catacombes in the basement and there were so many bones that I wanted to take a femur with me but Mafe was like "No, dont you dare!" so I didnt. It was still cool to see though, especially this one well where they had all these skulls and I think arm bones arranged like layers of a cake.

We continued walking around, going here and there. Took lunch at a Chinese restaurent in Lima's tiny China town, which is actually bigger than the one in México City. We ended the tour in one of Mafe's favorite bar/restaurant and I tried for the first time a pisco sour, which is actually pretty delicious and tastes pretty closely to a magarita. Our next trip took us to the hotel of Ilana and her boyfriend, where we also eventually met up with Gwen, Sarah and Colleen (except for the boyfriend, everyone else is a grad student from the states). We all decided that we were sick of criollo food (no more lomo saltado for me, please!!!) and didnt want Chifa, as Sarah's dad was Chinese and she hated the food at Chifa and so went to a place that served generalized Arabic food- I tried to determine if it was Pakastani, Palestinian or Lebonese or any one of the many Arabic countries, but Mafe said it was just Arabic food, well okay. But It was very good, the hummas was excellant and my shawarma sandwhich was absolutely delicious!

After checking out an artists' market we wandered over to this restaurant La Paz for some drinks. I started with a Pisco Sour de Maraycúya, which was basically a pisco with some added fruit flavor, and as time passed finished with a warm wine drink, which was really good, especially as it was very cold. We then broke for home, as it was very late.

Sunday I didnt do much...we just hung out in Mafe's room and watched Harry Potter. We left the house for Lima to meet up with some of Mafe's friends and then walked over to the hotel where all the girls were staying to say good-bye to Sarah and Ilana's boyfriend who were leaving that night. After calling A to talk to him, Mafe and I walked to the ocean and then I realized that I had left my journal in the phone booth. When we walked back the journal was gone...although who would want a used journal I have no idea, but I have been mourning its loss ever since.

Monday was more interesting. We lunched with Mafe's family and then left to meet up with Sarah, Colleen and Gwen. All of us took a cab to Pachakamak (I know I didnt spell that right) which is this arch. site on the edge of Lima. WOW, its so incredible and I left the place wanting to know more about...perhaps even work there, its just that cool with a long history of occupation. When we got back to their hotel, we sat around for a bit, wasting time until we went to Mafe's favorite Chifa, ordering the family sized meal for four persons, which came with so much food we couldnt finish it all. Our next stop took us to this one district of Lima thats supposed to be very hip. The first place we went to was okay, cept for this guy on guitar that was kinda bringing down the mood and putting us to sleep. We got out of there and went to a different place that wasnt packed but at least was playing music with a little more pick-up. We hung out and talked for a long time- it was a lot of fun and we didnt leave the place until like 2 in the morning.

Right now I am killing time in the lab where everyone is getting all their last-minute things together for the presentations tomorrow at the Moche conference. When we break from here Mafe's going to take me to this computer store called Wilson that sells any computer program you want for 5 soles, so Windows XP Office here I come. I am going to be like a kid in a candy store, buying all the programs and games I can for dirt cheap. Yeah pirated programs! Go gray market!

Well, this post is long enough...mom and dad, how is spain? Write to me, kay?
I am having a blast in Lima!


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