Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Time in Lima

Lima is a bustling city. Especially during Semana Santa (Holy Week) during which we found ourselves maneuvering through hoards of Catholic pilgrims in our search for the city's most compelling sites. We discovered a city with a split personality, one struggling to identify itself amidst its past as a colonial imperial capital, pre-Columbian Indian homeland, and modern-day world metropolis.

Always in pursuit of adventure, Michelle introduced us to a side of Lima most tourists don't get to see. Venturing outside of the unashamedly cosmopolitan district of Miraflores - the location of our hostel - Michelle led us on an expedition to find every attraction that managed to make it in the legend of our free tourist map. Michelle, aka Sacagawea, navigated beautifully to the first several sites, but I began to lose confidence after venturing into one area in which every other person we saw gave us weird looks and muttered something about "peligroso." Remembering the instances where I've seen peligroso used - on rickety bridges, rat poisoning, and trucks carrying explosives - I knew we should consider these unsolicited greetings with seriousness. Apparently, so did Lima's finest . . . just before we were undoubtedly about to be stripped of all our belongings, 3 city police officers approached us and insisted on giving us a mile long escort back into the "safe" part of town.

We celebrated 4 glorious years of marriage while in Lima. Dane was having withdrawals of his favorite food (pizza) and Michelle wanted to approximate our tradition of eating sushi on our anniversary by trying cebiche, a fresh raw fish dish marinated in citrus juice, so we used our anniversary as an excuse to dine at one of the fine eateries in Miraflores - the only time we ate at a restaurant the entire month in South America. The food was delicioso, and Michelle enjoyed "the flavor of Peru," Inca Cola.

Our night out culminated in a stroll along Peru's west coast for a view of the sunset over the Pacific Ocean.

Parasailor off the Lima coast

Michelle commented that the majority of our conversation on this trip had something to do with food. Most of that was probably initiated by Dane upon feeling the pounds fall off his already thin body due to all the climbing and walking (in some cases 20 km a day). All the activity did provide an excuse for temporarily suspending dietary discipline and indulging in countless varieties of street food. Dane's favorite had to be the empanadas and saltenas. Michelle's was hard-boiled quail eggs.

You couldn't pay Dane to eat this in the States

Opting for a one hour flight over a 30 hour bus ride through winding mountain "roads," we left Lima for Cusco - "naval of the world" and the oldest continually occupied city in the Americas. Like thousands of other travelers, Cusco is our gateway to the lost Incan city of Machu Picchu.


  1. Fantastically detailed entry! The drama of your "peligroso" comments and police escort unfolded in my head... I could turn this into a play. love it! And not at all hard to believe.


  2. It sounds like great times! I think I am having some sort of envy or jealousy reading your adventures! :)
    Michelle, thanks so much for the sweet baby gift. It came in the mail just as I was hitting the weepy state of postpartum. Only this time I just cried for 2 days over good stuff...and your package made me boo hoo on a whole new level! Jackson said, "how do you make tears and smiles at the same time"?
    Your friendship means the world to me, and I will ever be grateful for the crazy way we crossed paths years ago! Dane, take good care of my friend sacagawea...she needs someone to watch out for her now an then! ;)

  3. I can never remember your anniversary because I always feel like it should be during the summer. Sorry :(

  4. Oh, that was my comment up there ^^^^ :)

  5. Enjoyed the anniversary story and pictures to go along with it. That made me smile. :)