Starting point: SeaTac to Atlanta, Atlanta to Lima. We stood around in the Lima airport for ages, as we waited for others in the tour to arrive. Finally departed by bus to the hotel. We were tiiiired.
The hotel – Antigua Miraflores - was lovely. Our room was huge. We had a nice big bed to share, a huge bathtub. There was water in the bathroom, and water in the halls, which was totally awesome. Because we were drinking water like fish, but you can’t drink water from the tap in Peru. It has be bottled. This hotel was the only one that provided water for refilling our bottles.
Our first day in Lima started with breakfast in the hotel. Jason had a tamale, and I had little plate of eggs. There was also orange juice, but as I am allergic, Jason drank mine. I also had – I think – coffee. Maybe. Or something close to it. I drowned it in milk and sugar, so it probably didn’t matter in the long run.
Then we all loaded onto a bus and took a little tour of Lima.
After the tour, we had the rest of the day to ourselves. We did a bit of exploring, and Jason was eager to try ceviche, so we hunted down a restaurant recommended to us by our tour guide. We actually walked by the restaurant twice before “finding” it. The name on the door was not the name we were given. Ceviche is very good, but cooked with lemon juice – and like oranges, I am allergic. L I had prawns, and my first taste of Inka Cola.
After, we decided to backtrack to some ruins of a clay temple we had just glimpsed on the bus tour – Huana Pucllana. They weren’t too far from the hotel, and it would be a good way to end the day. We arrived, paid for our admission, requested an English guide, and were told it would be a few minutes. We checked out the tiny little museum they had at the admissions area, then lingered around out front. After a while - much longer than “a few minutes” – we sat down on one of the benches. Other groups came down from the pyramid and left. Those of us waiting … waited. Eventually, one man demanded his money back. I’m not even sure how long we waited – maybe twenty, maybe forty minutes – before a guide came out and confessed that he thought he had done his last tour for the day. But he led us into the ruins.
Things to note:
- You can't flush TP down the toilet - it goes in a little bin by the toilet. It took a little getting used to. And when we got sick... Oh my.
- Can't drink the water, either - gotta buy bottled. And you need a lot of water in high elevations. The tour did provide a free bottle each day.
- No eating unpeelable fruits or veggies or lettuce, either (unless they are cooked).
- They will take American money - but only if it's in really good condition. And they can be PICKY. Stock up on brand new bills, and if you can, don't even fold them.
- Take a shot every time Jason whips out a travel guide to look up a location, a route, or a place to eat.
- Take two shots every time Jason says, "I read it in a book..."