January 8th, 2019
Life in Lima!
Our trip started with a teary goodbye to our families as we took an 8 hour flight to Lima, Peru. From there, we were taken to our accommodations in Miraflores.
Here is a brief overview of our first couple of days!
Photo credit: Nick Agel
The Food! Although vegetarian/vegan options are limited, we are enjoying trying new foods, especially some exotic fruits we don't get at home. We even found the vegan version of "Lomo Saltado" a popular, traditional Peruvian dish!
The Prices! Groceries, eating out and Uber rides are very reasonable and certainly less expensive than what we were paying in New Jersey. This lunch special was 20 soles which is equivalent to $6.
The Art! So many beautiful murals and colors everywhere you go especially in the district of Barranco.
The People! Being fluent in Spanish has allowed me to have pleasant conversations with locals and many people speak English as well. We are also loving getting to know our crazy but awesome Bourdain members!
The Cats! We found a cat park where friendly stray cats roam around. The cats have been vaccinated and are fed regularly with the help of volunteers. You can also apply to adopt them! (Don't tell Harry and Princess)
The Butterflies! We visited Morphology, a butterfly sanctuary where you can learn about the 1000s of butterfly species in Peru. It is also a restaurant and bar with talented dancers and aerialists who put on a mesmerizing show!
FOMO: There have been so many get togethers, happy hours, events happening and I want to do alllll of them. However, it was important that we establish a routine so we joined a gym (and are actually going to it), have gone grocery shopping, have cooked some meals at home and are doing boring stuff like laundry. Side note, dryers are not common and air drying is the norm. I wish this was a fort but it's just me trying to dry my sheets.
Water shortage: Miraflores is an upscale district in Lima and has beautifully landscaped parks. However, it really doesn't rain here (going on 11 days with no rain) so these areas have to be watered regularly. At the same time, there are areas of Lima where people have limited access to water. As beautiful as these parks are, it does not feel right that water is being used for aesthetics when the country has a water shortage. Water scarcity is also becoming a bigger issue due to effects of global warming.
Pollution: There are many older vehicles, some I've never even heard of, and overall too many cars in the city which causes a lot of air pollution. It makes for some hazy, grey days and will turn the bottom of your feet black if you walk around barefoot in your apartment.
Safety: Miraflores is considered a safe place to visit, and indeed, I feel comfortable walking around on my own. Unfortunately, two of our fellow Bourdain members were robbed at gun point and another member witnessed a woman be robbed. Thankfully, no one was physically harmed but it is a chilling reminder that anything could happen at anytime. We are certainly being more vigilant when going out and appreciate that we are not on this journey alone.