If I ever had an online dating profile, one of my interests would be long walks on the beach. Hours before our inevitable and sad departure from Lima, Steve was kind enough to take us a beach side stroll/power walk. Still full from Parado’s chicken and sorbet, I had to trot to keep up with. Steve led us through park after small park, some filled with parents supervising kids and playing with dogs, others filled with people staring out into the ocean or at each other. He explained how when he visited Lima previously, he and Vanessa (I hope this is how you spell her name) had walked along the same trail. Despite the car horns, building and ubiquitous pedestrians, the shore of Lima reminded me of Chincheros, of the serene hike, waterfall and starry night we were rewarded. Both filled my ears with the incessant flow of water and made me consider how vast the world was, one by looking up into the constellations, using modern day Iphone apps to pinpoint the location of Jupiter or Venus and the other by looking across the ocean toward another continent. Stumbling among the jagged and slippery rocks, we skipped stones, played chase the tide and touched the pacific. Lima is truly an amazing city, allowing one to experience the urban bustle of shopping and late night entertainment in the downtown areas of Miraflores as well as the tranquility of nature all within walking distance. It exhibits an obvious western influence with Avengers shown in English and name brands like Steve Madden; yet, is also representative of evolving Peruvian culture with downtown plazas that date back to the 1960s and catacombs buried in cathedrals. There are certainly tourists but it isn’t like Cuzco and the ones that I did meet were all incredibly and interesting. For instance, at the airport in Lima, Andrew and I met a tall, lumberjack looking American that was a NatGeo photographer who had just finished the trip of a lifetime doing everything we had done but also had explored the Amazon. I am also an avid fan of Chifa, which is Chinese food influenced by Peruvian cuisine.
To sum up my experiences in a sentence all I have to say about Lima is scenic beach, indoor/outdoor modernized malls, delicious buffet food such as cowheart and other foods sin leche, ability to buy alcoholic drinks/gamble responsibly, humid, great empanadas, name brand shirts at a discount, walking, overcast, cars, sea level, touristy and homey.