Tag Archives: Peru

Historically, the times that I’ve actually known what I was talking about have been few and far between. This is particularly true when it comes to travel, or geography, or really, facts of any kind.

Once, when we were in downtown Seattle, a middle-aged couple stopped Rand and me and asked where they could find a liquor store (at 2pm on a Saturday. I suppose they were putting the magic back in their relationship). I gave them very specific directions that, had the couple followed them to the letter, would have led them not only the wrong way down a one-way street, but nowhere near a liquor store. Rand looked on, in awe – he would later tell me that I spoke to the couple with such confidence that, against his better judgement, he didn’t question it.

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On occasion, I like to think of myself as a badass.

I’m not, mind you, but I like to think of myself as one. I also like to think of myself as elegant, demure, clear-skinned, and clever. Compared to those far greater delusions “badass” doesn’t seem so unreasonable. Especially when it comes to food.

A few weeks ago, I stood on my soapbox and prattled on about this precise subject. How I fearlessly gobbled guinea pig in Peru, and how in the past I’d tackled tripe without thinking about it, polished off pig’s feet with panache.  Food, it seems, is the one area of my life in which I’m not a coward.

In fact, when it comes to cuisine, I may actually be a badass. A little bit, at least.

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This week, the motherboard on my computer broke.

I’m not even sure what that statement means. Not since I cracked my ulna the summer after second grade have I broken something, suffered a large amount of inconvenience as a result, and still barely understood what was broken in the first place. The good news is that the motherboard is now fixed, and waiting for me at Rand’s office.

And no, I still don’t know what a motherboard does.

Since my computer has been out of commission all week, I haven’t been able to post about any of my most recent trips – to London, New York, or Barcelona (I’d yet to upload the photos to Flickr when my computer died. I reacted to this like any reasonable adult would. I cried and then ate a bunch of Oreos). This initially stressed me out – Have I been rambling on about Peru for too many weeks now? Are my readers getting incredibly bored of hearing me talk about eating guinea pigs and not flushing my t.p.?

Hopefully not, because there is still so much I have yet to tell you about our journey to South America. And so many photos to share – ones that, thankfully, made it up to Flickr in one piece. Here are ten of my favorites from the trip.

  1. Creepy little skull sculpture, the Larco Museum, Lima.
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    Doesn't he TOTALLY look like the guy who was guarding the Holy Grail in the third Indiana Jones movie?

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My first vehicle was a 1976 AMC Pacer. (Please try to control your jealousy.)

Because the seat did not adjust properly, I needed to sit on a large pillow to see over the steering wheel (I am short). Because the breaks were not the strongest in the world, I had to stand on the brake pedal with both feet (with so much force that it lifted me off the seat) in order to stop the vehicle. That vehicle was not with me long, because, as I politely informed my mother, if I was going to die prematurely young, I hoped it would be from something slightly more creative than “death by shitty car.”

So the Pacer was sold off, and I got myself a Hyundai Excel. The brakes worked and I could see over the steering wheel, which I suppose was better, but damn it, was it dull. And so bourgeoisie.

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Breaking Philip's number one rule.

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My friend Philip gave me a great piece of advice many years ago, around the time that he himself became a father.

The rule, simply, was this: do not take photos of children you do not know.

If you think about it, it’s rather genius. No one wants to be the creepy photographer, standing in the corner, snapping photos of children that aren’t theirs. No parent wants to have that awkward exchange with a stranger (and yet, I am told, they will have it. And if they do, you’d better listen).

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My husband occasionally has moments of brilliance. He has moments of utmost stupidity, too, but since I love him more than Seattle on a sunny day (a rare phenomenon that I can see outside my office window as I type this) I’d like to focus on the brilliance.

At the end of our trip to Peru, we were talking about our experiences in the country. I noted that Peru was much cheaper than Italy, yet seemed to be just as culturally rich. Even though we got ripped off a few times, it wasn’t nearly to the degree that we might have in Rome or Naples. It was far less costly to see Peru.

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Flying out of Cuzco, back to Lima.

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With the exception of my thighs and derriere, I am not what you would call a hearty girl (though those two parts of me could survive drought, famine, pestilence, and probably a nuclear war. Everything, really, save for another season of skinny jeans). But excluding my well-developed lower region, I’m kind of wimpy. My arms aren’t particularly strong, I have a small waist, I’m prone to migraines and colds, and I’m constantly suffering from motion sickness (just the sheer number of other illness-related posts I was able to link to in that last sentence should convince you of my alleged frailty).

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Hey folks – my apologies for the blog being so thin lately. I’ve been on the road – a lot – and I can’t seem to justify spending my days sitting in a hotel room blogging. We’ll return to daily posts next week, I promise. In the meantime, read on about Peruvian foods you must try. And for your own safety, do not consume this post on an empty stomach. 

As some of you may have noticed, I don’t really do much research on my travel destinations, except when it comes to cuisine. I left for Peru with a vague understanding of who created Machu Picchu, but I was able to rattle off the local desserts like an expert. This concerns me slightly. I have this fear that, should aliens ever abduct me (and let’s face it: this is a highly probable likelihood) they will ask me all sorts of questions about other parts of my planet. And most of the time, I WILL HAVE NO CLUE WHAT TO SAY right up until the topic of food comes up, at which point I will be some sort of savant. Governmental structure of Peru? No clue. But they have these fantastic dulce de leche sandwich cookies called alfajores (I’ve eaten enough in one sitting to risk diabetic shock). Iceland? I can’t remember anything about my trip there except for that yogurt dessert they kept feeding us. And my usually reply to when anyone mentions the U.K. is to drool and mumble “sticky toffee pudding” with a glazed look in my eye.

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