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Updates on Mi Vida!

As far as adventures go since my last post, there has only been one main trip: to Caral, the oldest city in all of the Americas.

It took a 3-hour bus trip go get both there and back, but it was well worth spending the entire day there. For one, I could truly breathe! Since the area around the city is not too developed, there is not air pollution like there is in Lima (from the excessive automobile traffic and whatnot). The scenery around the site was so beautiful – incredibly tall sandy mountains, farms that grew a plethora of vegetables and fruit, and green trees everywhere! I really took how happy nature makes me for granted prior to this trip.

Caral itself consisted of a tour of the ruins, which took about two hours. There were around 7 or so main pyramids, but only the bottom halves remained. These pyramids were built before the ancient Egyptian pyramids – that’s how old they are! I found it interesting that they chose to live in the sandy part of the area close to the mountains when just a little ways down there are fertile green pastures…perhaps they did live there and just had their main gathering center where they built the pyramids, I don’t know. All I do know because I miss green nature so much here, I would personally choose that over an arid, sandy environment any day.

This is the official site for Caral – check it out! Google can translate it to English for ya, if you’d like :) http://www.zonacaral.gob.pe/

I haven’t done much else that’s worth noting since my last blog post, but I have decided to make a pro-con few lists of my thoughts on Miraflores.

COMBIS – Con: They are always over-packed and I get a crick in my neck EVERY DANG TIME I have to stand; they need higher roofs on those things. Pro: If we ever crashed (since seat belts aren’t a thing), I have a ton of people that would cushion my fall!

WINTER – Con: I’m always just a little bit colder. Under no circumstances can I walk around in a t-shirt and shorts, which my usual attire in the U.S.. Pro: I never sweat! Unless I’m exercising, that’s totally different.

CITY LIVING – Con: Where did the nature go? And why can’t I walk outside for more than 30 minutes without coughing or blowing my nose? Pro: EVERYTHING in my district is within walking distance. Talk about convenient! And added exercise :)

THE DRIVE TO PUCP – Con: It’s a good distance, about 45 minutes, and I have to take two buses. There is always ALWAYS traffic. Pro: I have actually met a decent number of nice people on the “S” combi. People always seem interested to talk to a foreign exchange student!

LAUNDRY – Con: It costs about $3-$4 per load (which is weekly for me) and I can never seem to pick it up on time due to my schedule, making me have to wait a while while they search for the location of my bag of clothes at the laundromat. Pro: I don’t have to wash my own clothes…always a win :) Plus, they even fold it for me! Lord knows I would never do that.

USING THE SHOWERS ON CAMPUS – Con: If a girl’s sports team is using the showers when I walk in, I am guaranteed zero hot water. Pro: That means I’ll have to wait another hour, which means play more soccer or run! And when the showers are empty, that means excellent water pressure as well as temperature!

TRYING NEW FOODS – Con: If I don’t know a food item in Spanish, I could be consuming anything from cow intestine to guinea pig. Pro: If I don’t know what I’m eating and I like it, then no harm done! I’m always down to try new foods (just don’t tell me what it is before I consume it).

Speaking of trying new foods…I went to the “Mistura” food festival today! I tried everything I’ve been meaning to! This includes roasted alpaca, fried guinea pig, shrimp soup, and Andean and Amazonian chocolate. I ate a lot more than that and spent quite a bit of money, but it was totally worth it! It is said that there were thousands vendors from across Perú. It took place along the green coast of Miraflores. The types of food were divided into sections across the area. For example, there was a massive tent devoted to bread, one devoted to southern Peruvian food, another devoted to Chifa (Chinese-Peruvian mix), and many more! I spent four hours there walking, eating, watching cooking demonstrations, and becoming informed on the variety of foods available. It was truly and incredible experience…PLEASE read more about it here! –> http://mistura.pe/

Pictures aren’t posting right now, so I’ll add them onto the next blog post.

Until next time,

– Allie

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