Cobblestone vs asphalt. Mountains vs ocean. Mediocre food vs great food. How much more different could the cities of Cusco and Lima get? After our first day in Lima, everyone in the group was commenting on how dramatic the distinction is. It feels like another country. Of course, in America you can also find great disparities between cities, but that is something that is already integrated into our view of the United States. Before coming to Lima, our perception of Peru was solely of Cusco and its surrounding villages. Our view was skewed like that of someone who has only ever visited New York City, so subconsciously assumes that all of America is like Manhattan. Since visiting Lima, I feel like I have a much better sense of what Peru, as a country, is like.
Our first day in Lima we went to a nice restaurant called San Antonio, which Profe told us he used to go to as a kid. The food was delicious and very reasonably priced. They even offered filtered water, so it was my first time drinking water not out of a bottle in about two weeks! After San Antonio we went to the larcomar, which is basically a mall built into the side of a cliff overlooking the ocean. We wanted to enjoy the view at a fancy restaurant but nobody was really hungry yet. So, we got drinks and sat enjoying the ocean breeze. Later that night we went to the movies. Some of us saw the Avengers and some Pitch Perfect 2. Everyone was exhausted after the movie so we walked back to the hostel. I decided to call it an early night so I could wake up and go for a run on the malecon in the morning. Basically all these experiences including, eating delicious and quick food, going to a mall, looking over the beach, going to the movies, and going for a run, are things that we couldn't do in Cusco. Like I said, Lima could be a different country!
Photo of the Larcomar in Lima