Hola everyone! Monica and I both have a little blurb here... I apologize for the length... And still no pictures unfortunately. This way you can picture Lima however your little heart desires!
We are spending half our time at the school in Pachacutek, and the rest of it in an orphanage for children with special needs- that’s where we were today! It’s hard to believe that all these kids really don’t belong to anybody. One of my favourites is Lorena. She is three or four and stays in her crib all day because she does not have the strength to walk or sit up. She loves her bottle and being held and cuddled, like most of the kids there.
Here’s a good bus story: Last weekend we had a LOT of bus time. People often jump onto the bus to try to sell their wares (sandwiches con carne- meat, peaches, oranges, bamboo), and jump off again a few minutes later. A little boy who was probably 12 years old was singing and asking for money on the bus and so we gave him a few extra bananas. Judging by his shocked, disgusted, priceless expression he was not at all interested in the food, so started trying to sell the bananas to other passengers!
This weekend was full of exciting things! On Saturday we and seven other volunteers were lead by the very competent Pablo on a hiking adventure! We rode the bus for approximately four hours and then hiked for about two hours to see a waterfall. It was gorgeous! Lima is all smog so it was refreshing to see actual blue sky and clouds again. There were donkeys and cows (Shanna has a bruise where a cow “nudged” her with his horn) and many stray dogs along the trail. In Lima, all the dogs that are kept as pets seem to be wearing coats to differentiate them from the wild ones.
Sunday we woke up late and then four of us volunteers took a taxi to Miraflores. We have not heard back from Melinda so missed the meeting that would be going on this morning. Instead, we took a tour of the Lima ruins Huaca Pucllana. A few key facts about the Limas:
- Their main gods were the Sea and the Moon
- They sacrificed girls of short stature aged 12 – 25 because the Sea and the Moon were both female gods (we don’t stand much chance)
- At the same time of the sacrificing they had a banquet and ate shark
- They built their pyramids and walls out of bricks, which were hand formed and then sun dried. They layers the bricks and put mud in between the layers but not in between the bricks so that they could sway and not break during an earthquake
After the tour we went to La Mar for lunch. It is a well known ceviche restaurant (ceviche is raw fish in various juices- it’s a Peruvian delicacy).We had the sample platter, with five different types of ceviche. We also had some very flavorful rice with all types of seafood and vegetables. And my (Monica’s) particular favorite was a skillet of corn, mashed potatoes, squid and octopus with spices. That’s right mom, I loved the octopus! We finished lunch at around 4 and then saw La Iglesia de la Virgin Miragrosa (Church of the miraculous virgin), El Parque de Amor (Park of Love ) and then headed home.
Today (Monday), we went back to the Special Needs Orphanage. We feed the kids and play with them and keep them from running away. We are going to have Spanish lessons this afternoon.