Thursday, February 15, 2007

And the journey begins

I expected to experience a mixture of emotions as we left Seattle; instead, I just felt really excited and really ready to hit the road. Despite an early start after little sleep, our trip down to Lima was uneventful. When we arrived, bleary-eyed, around midnight, we were very happy to have set up accomodations and a taxi pick up. Someone holding up a sign with your name on it is a happy sight in that situation!

It is unnerving to arrive in a foreign place at that hour--everything manages to seem a bit desolate, and areas around airports are never that appealling. But we've been pleased with our hostel (it's in a remodeled colonial house, though hot for our Seattle selves) and Mileflores seemed much more alive and friendly when we ventured out this morning.

Today, Tyler and I did a bit of exploring in Lima. We took a taxi into the center plaza (Plaza Mayor) and serendipitously happened upon the changing of the guard at the governor's palace. It was pretty impressive--a marching band, high-stepping guards, guards on horseback, along with military and local police along the fence of the mansion as well. It's hard to believe they go through such pomp and circumstance every day! After that, we checked out the nearby cathedral which included a mosaic room with Pissaro's remains. (For those who don't remember their middle school world history facts, Pissaro is the Spanish conquistador who founded Lima and other cities in Peru). After that we had our first semi-mystery lunch--boiled potatoes in some sort of dressing that didn't have too much flavor, sweet tea, and chicken and rice. Basically we knew we didn't want the soup so ordered the other item (said potatoes), and I recognized pollo con arroz and not the other option, so that's what we ended up with. After that, we went to a Franciscan Monastary that also included a crypt with lots and lots of bones. The whole monastary was beautiful and the tour sounded little of it as we could pick up. I was sorry not to get to learn more about that fascinating place.

Now we're taking a bit of a rest in our hostel's courtyard with the plan to head out for some ceviche for dinner and ruins and a beach tomorrow. Then I think it will be off to Pisco!

Sorry for no pictures--we're using free internet at the hostel on a pretty old computer. Hopefully we'll have the opportunity to upload them in the next few days!

Love to all--Sarah

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