I am posting this from a rather dirty internet cafe in Lima, Peru. I had a whole post written but my PC running Windows 98 wouldnÂ´t read it. When I get it to work somehow, this will be replaced by a harrowing account of travelling from St. Louis to Lima via Atlanta! OK, it wasnÂ´t harrowing.
Update: Here it is!
5/31 2:18AM Lima, Peru
I tried to sleep after arriving at the Villa Rica once again, but I’m just not in the sleeping mood.
The trip from Columbia to Lima could’ve been better, but I got here in one piece (except for the skin that flaked off due to an earlier poison ivy encounter). The first flight, from St. Louis to Atlanta, ended abruptly as the plane slammed into the runway. I felt that one! The crew was apologetic and said that they did get us there early (get it, because the descent was so fast!). The flight to Lima was better. I wish it wasn’t over six hours long though. The plane was also late because it needed servicing, which isn’t very reassuring. We did get a free meal of chicken or pasta. I thought pasta was kind of vague so I ordered chicken. It turned out that the pasta was pesto and I missed out.
I met up with two of the students on that flight from Atlanta. I knew one of them from MU but the other was a mystery to us. We tried to pick out from the crowd who was most likely to be the other student. One young woman had a pink Hello Kitty carry-on and was clutching a giant Minnie Mouse plushie. We joked that that was the anthropologist in training, ready to work in a dusty lab on ancient skeletons. Getting out of customs took forever as usual, and when we finally reached the exit we were met by a frantic Bob. The student who was supposed to arrive an hour before us was delayed until after we had landed. I don’t think he’s back from the airport with her yet. Hope things went ok.
Since Bob had to stay and work that out, I was to guide our taxi to the Villa Rica. We got kind of lost and confused. I have little maps, but it appears that Peruvians just aren’t used to reading maps or seeing the city grid as a map. Our driver was trying to read the map as he was driving which was funny and scary at the same time. Good thing traffic at 1AM is very light. Everything in this district seems to shut down at 10PM or so if I recall. We did eventually hit a major road and got to an intersection I recognized. Then it was home free, so to speak.
The two students who are here now seem satisfied with the lodging. The Villa Rica has been pimped out since the last time I was here. There’s a vending machine for beer in the main hallway. I bet the previous field students would’ve appreciated that! Some of the rooms sport new TVs too, flat screen CRTs. Nice! Unfortunately, there is one change for the worse: all the light bulbs are replaced with those energy saving fluorescents. It’s very harsh. I’m glad Kristin isn’t here to be blinded by all of them.