The Next Adventure: Peru

It’s been over a year since my return to the US. I don’t believe a day went by during this time I didn’t think of traveling again. Perhaps I’ve romanticized Africa, but I can truly say it was one of the greatest times in my life. Im ecstatic to see what this next adventure will bring. It is markedly different of course. I’m going to Lima, Peru. A modern city. I am also not traveling alone. I can only imagine how polar this experience will be, and I’m glad, it’s new, somewhere I have yet to see. And I get to share this experience with someone I love. We leave in two days, and I absolutely cannot wait.
Already, I’ve noticed dramatic differences since last year. To be honest, I haven’t put much thought into it. I didn’t start packing until a few days ago. In terms of prepping I’ve mostly been researching the culinary scene in Lima. It is after all, a food capital, and I am clearly, in love with the industry.

Of course, I don’t think there’s a better way to explore a culture than through food. Primarily a blend of Spanish and Amerindian (Inca) cuisine with strong African, Arab, Italian, Chinese, and Japanese influence. Located near the ocean in an extremely humid environment (near 100% humidity all year). All of this resulting in a unique fusion of cuisine. There are more varieties of food and restaurants than I could hope to experience. From “haute-cuisine” such as ceviche at La Mar (there’s a branch in San Francisco) or maki acevichado at Matsuei (of famed Nobu Matsuhisa) to hole in the wall street fare, dim sum, and traditional peruvian restaurants. Lima culture centers around its food culture, always with a distinct representation of their rich past. Even the most forward or modern cuisine has its ties in history, often the food is the same as it has been, with modern twists allowed by advances such as refrigeration. Tradition is important, you won’t find a cevicheria open for dinner, since before the refrigerator fish would have gone bad by night. Besides, most people eat lunch around 2 (dinner at 9 or 10), usually lasting several hours, so you probably won’t be all that hungry for dinner anyway.
Aside from being beyond excited for eating my weight in ceviche (and with the exchange rate the most expensive meal in the city will likely never top $30/person) I am excited to volunteer. We have yet to receive our placements though, so its hard to really think much about that! I will however, not be in a medical setting (I requested) in attempts to broden my experience. Of course, this probably means I’ll be with kids. As you all know, I absolutely cannot stand kids. I can’t rationalize with them and just feel uncomfortable, I’m hoping this experience can make me at least a bit better with them…
Now to deal with the most fun aspects of travel, assuring my credit cards won’t be canceled and my phone will work…


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