26.09.2007 - 30.09.2007 17 °C
Having arrived at Lima at 6.30 pm after a grueling 36 hours without sleep, highlights of the Plane journey included getting slightly lost in Madrid Airport when we were trying to find our gate and Sam spilling wine all over EJ, so she smelt lovely for the rest of the trip!!
Having arrived at our 4 Star hotel in Miraflores, which was far from backpacking.
We met up with Nacho and Melissa who live in Lima. They kindly took us out and in true backpacker fashion we went for Sushi! We discussed our plans and they both provided us with some great tips. So we took them up on the idea of heading for Mancora on the way up to Ecuador.
The next day, after spending 3 hours trying to get money out of the bank, we headed into Central Lima. We both became very aware of ourselves as literally everyone stared at us. This slightly unnerved us. .
You can see by Sam’s expression, what his thoughts were...
We walked from Plaza De Armas to Plaza San Martin and noticed that there were lots of young couples passionately embracing around the statues. Hence we renamed it ´Snoggers Square´.
After a brief experience of Central Lima, we decided it wasn’t the place for us and headed back to Miraflores. We walked to the beach and were pleased to meet some surfers who actually asked us whether we were Spanish - we were very proud, as for up to then, despite our efforts of trying to speak in Spanish, everyone seemed to reply to us in English.
The next day we checked out of the hotel sad to leave the luxuries of life and headed to the nearest coffee house to wait before we got our bus to Mancora. We found Starbucks of all places! It was very surreal to be sitting in a Starbucks with the same lay out as every other damn one.
Once aboard the 17-hour bus journey EJ settled in to watching film after film after film in Spanish!! Her particular favourite was a "boys in the hood" meets American football film!
On our first break we where treated to a game of Spanish Bingo. Sam thought he would have won but did not understand any of the Spanish numbers!! EJ realised there was room for improvement with Spanish. After a quick inspection by the Peruvian Police accompanied by sniffer dogs, we stopped again at 3:00 am. Sam went for a pee and nearly missed the bus!!
During the journey it dawned on us both that having had the comfort of a 4 star hotel for the first 2 nights we had to start realising that accommodation was not going to be so grand and we would have to start slumming it.
We arrived in Mancora at 8:00 am and where guided by a local taxi to a recommended hostel!! At $10 dollars a night we decided to stay for 3 nights.
The 6 bed 2 bathroom, Jacuzzi and bedroom sea views for just us, seemed quite reasonable...
Mancora is known for its constant sunshine, surf and great seafood, we are loving this place!!
Have realised that my Spanish needs some work, EJ´s pigeon Spanish is coming on - I know rabbit Spanish, as I am like a rabbit in the headlights during any conversation. Also note to self always pack more than one pair of shorts!!
The Peruvians seem really friendly. I had some teenage boys in hysterics after they called out to me in English and I replied in Spanish. Then on the beach 4 little girls around the ages of 8 - 10 hovered around me for a while and when gathering enough courage asked if they could take a picture of themselves with me, once they taken a few, they ran off giggling. I then realised I was the only blonde on the beach - not sure whether to be flattered or to be thought as a freak show...