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Old 03-31-2013, 11:41 AM   #171
porkandcorn OP
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Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Portland, Oregon
Oddometer: 296
lima, peru

saturday, march 30, 2013

if you can't say anything nice, you are not supposed to say anything at all… but that would make fore a pretty dull, even dishonest, blog. i'm observing and stating what i see, hopefully without judgment.

that said, i'm not crazy about lima, peru. there's an uneasiness about this place that feels different from other large cities that i've seen here in south america. it's a tension - it's in the eyes of the people you see on the streets. but i am here until monday when i can buy a new rear tire to take with me into the mountains north of here.

miraflores cliffs, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr

since i've been traveling, i have repeatedly been told that when in lima, stay in the miraflores neighborhood. it's infrastructure is modern, and it's relatively safe. but it leaves much to be desired. at night, it takes on a more aggressive, weird character. the restauranteurs are again fighting for gringo dollars, each serving the same things. around midnight, some shady characters start to come out from under the rocks, standing around, staring, talking about who knows what as you pass by. it's not just my observation - other travelers have mentioned similar sentiments. i've been told other neighborhoods are unsafe. but what am i missing in those places?

miraflores beach, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr

maybe i am not seeing the right places? maybe i'm just 'explored out' for the moment, and not making a good effort. but places are just places, buildings, streets. places are really only defined by their human element. my interaction here has mainly been with other travelers - australians, swedes, germans, brits, argentines, brazilians. but i have tried to connect with peruvians. despite efforts, the only contact i've been able to establish is with the owners and operators of this very nice hostel - an oasis of calm, relaxation, and laziness within the confines of the miraflores neighborhood. otherwise, the peruvians here seem not to want to interact with me. maybe i'm too tall and scary? i don't really understand.

miraflores waves, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i became frustrated, very frustrated looking for a tire on friday (holiday), saturday (not technically a holiday, but still a holiday.) i gave up after i finally found a motoshop yesterday afternoon, and had the front door slammed in my face because i arrived 5 minutes before they were to close. those are clearly not real motorcyclist. no true motorcyclist would ever do that to another motorcyclist in need.

so now i'm just accepting the futile nature of my simple task on this religious holiday, this sunday, and sitting around in a hammock and staring at the sky. i've gone for a walk on the beach, laid on the pebbles and rocks that make up the 'beaches' of lima, eaten ceviche at every and any possible opportunity (it's very good here - even from the supermarket), and in general making an effort to be as lazy as possible today before i (hopefully) find a tire and ride out of here in the morning. i'm looking forward to the mountains, the huascarán national park region, that is next. this is the highest range in the andes, and is sure to produce some amazing photos.

lima bean, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr

ceviche obsession, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr

ceviche in the supermarket, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr

this hostel, the house project, is fantastic. there is a courtyard here that is hard to leave. the people who are staying here are wonderful, nice, interactive, curious. this place alone has been worth the trip to lima.

house project hostel, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr

house project hostel courtyard, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i only have 5 weeks left to make it to cartegena, colombia. i am at the point in my adventure where there is a strong sense of and 'end' in sight and in mind. i am doing my best to keep to the here and now, but these future thoughts creep in. funny how easily such a simple thing as a thought of the future, or of the days past, can take you away from what really matters… but each of these diversions is an opportunity for growth.

miraflores sunset, lima, peru by porkandcorn, on Flickr
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