Hola de Lima, Peru! After nine hours on a plane, a five hour layover in Fort Lauderdale and a very stressful taxi ride from the airport, I arrived at my temporary home for the night at approximately 10:30 pm local time, which just so happens to also be central time, Wisconsin time. I immediately had to get used to speaking Spanish with everyone I met. I assume the looks I am getting are in response to a young girl traveling alone, and especially not speaking perfect Spanish. However the more people I speak to, the better my conversational Spanish becomes, even in such a short time. I have less than twelve hours to spend in Miraflores, a suburb of Lima, before I head back to the airport and am on my way to Cusco tomorrow morning. I’m not sure how comfortable I feel with venturing out on my own yet, so I am just blogging some first impressions for today, of my quick glimpse of Lima.
It’s surprisingly cold here. I was warned about the cold in Cusco, because of its high altitude, however Lima I expected to be somewhat tropical. I would compare this September day in Lima to a March day in Wisconsin. It rained last night, and was misty this morning when I got up.
I took the best shower ever. Maybe it was just that I felt I really needed a good shower after 14 hours of planes and airports, but I loved the shower at the hostel. It wasn’t that nice or anything, the walls were crumbling a bit and the water pressure was really low. But it was hot, and private, and clean. I felt refreshed, which made this somewhat unsettling experience of being alone in a foreign place a bit easier.
After I showered I called my parents and some friends and went to bed. The bed was just an old twin mattress with cheap sheets and a used blanket, but again, best nights’ sleep I’ve had in a while. I have no idea why. I was cold when I woke up, but under the blanket I was given, content. I didn’t have any reason to get up at a particular time today, besides needing to be at the airport at 11:00 pm, so I slept comfortably until about 10:00 am. The room had seven bunks in it, but only five occupants, I being the only female. I didn’t interact with the others much, besides inhaling unfathomable amounts cologne, since I basically showed up, showered and slept.
This morning I am still keeping to myself, taking the day to take it all in. The hostel is a nice place to do that, comfortable and accommodating. Tomorrow I will meet my host family in Cusco, Sunday I will meet my teachers and fellow students, Monday I will start classes. I also have the ISA blog to begin considering. So for today, I’m taking it easy.