Monday, October 4, 2010

Weekend in Lima

A view of the ocean from Miraflores. The road running along the coast is the Pan-American highway. (You can click on the photo to see it bigger.)

Watching the sun set over La Rosa Nautica, one of the best restaurants in Lima.

Last Wednesday and Thursday, we took a vacation to Lima. Normally when we visit, we don't get to spend much time there because of the 3 hour combi ride each way. So this time, we decided to stay overnight in a hostel.

We left after lunch on Wednesday and got to Miraflores (a really nice part of Lima where some friends live) by about 3:30. After finding a hostel (only 20 soles per person) and dropping off our stuff, we walked over to the ocean. It was one of the volunteer's first time seeing the Pacific Ocean! We then found a really beautiful restaurant overlooking the water, got seats on the patio outside, and watched the sun set over the ocean. After that we went for Greek food and hung out with friends from Miraflores.

The next day was pretty relaxed. In the morning, we got Starbucks, since coffee shops don't exist in Huaycan, and Indian food. Then, around 3, most of the other volunteers decided to head back to Huaycan, while another person and I stayed in Miraflores. She had lived in Miraflores before, so she caught up with old friends, while I went on a search for English books. I've been out of reading material for a while, so I was really excited to find two really good books, both by Latin American authors.

I bought Blindness by Jose Saramago (a Portuguese author who won the Nobel Prize in Literature), and The War of the End of the World by Mario Vargas Llosa (a famous Peruvian author and now politician). I'm now reading Blindness, which is really good so far. But I want to read it in Spanish in the future, because I can tell that it would be absolutely beautiful. And I can't wait to start on The War of the End of the World because I've already read and loved one of Vargas Llosa's books, and this is known as his literary masterpiece.

And that was about it. After that, I just met with the other volunteer, hung out with her friends for a while, then headed back with her. The weekend might sound pretty boring, but it was really a welcome change. After staying in Huaycan for a while - where there aren't bookstores, coffee shops, nice restaurants, or any food other than Peruvian food or chifa - it felt really nice to take a "vacation" and be able to relax, watch the sunset, and do things we normally can't.

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