Lima, redux.

Trip Start May 31, 2011
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Trip End Sep 06, 2011

Flag of Peru  ,
Wednesday, June 29, 2011

So I arrive back in Lima and head to Miraflores, the nicer part of the city.  What a difference from the airport area!  While the airport area felt almost like modern day ruins with crumbled buildings everywhere, Miraflores felt like a bustling, thriving neighborhood.  I checked into a pretty nice hostel, which seemed mainly filled with people who were doing their overnight before their early morning flight to Cuzco.  Since my legs were pretty shredded from climbing Wayna Picchu, I didn't do much the first day other than walking around the city to find some food.

The next morning at 4 A.M. my suspicions were confirmed as half of the people in my dorm room got up and packed up all their gear and backpacks etc to leave.  Since it was probably going to be like this every day, I decided that I wanted to look into maybe a hotel or something so I could get some uninterrupted rest.  I looked around for a hotel, but found that for about the same amount I could rent a private apartment for a few days.  This also works with John's First Tenet of Happy Traveling:  When you have a favorable exchange rate, go ahead and splurge a little. I settled on this apartment for $65 a night.  Nice building, free wifi, great location, and a whole uninterrupted night's sleep. :)

Thanks to my friends in Miami from Lima, especially Diego Tizon, I ended up at a club Bizarro one night listening to a set that went from 88 BPM to 140 at the end! Haha.  While that was kind of wack, Diego did hook me with with some DJ friends of his that were spinning at a rave type thing in this park out the the middle of nowhere.  VIP and backstage access.  Thanks man!  I had a blast and it reminds me that cool people attract cool people.

I also went to Larcomar which is this cool mall kind of hung off the edge of a cliff with a beautiful view for sunset.  I checked out the famous El Parque del Armor with its statue of reclining lovers, and then for one of the highlights of Lima, I went to Parque Reserva, which is a huge water fountain park with some interactive type fountains you can play around in.  While I have been to water parks before, this was the first one that was actually a national park.  Great idea as opposed to some normal, boring green park.  

I had ceviche several times, but the best place was Punto Azul, which is only open for lunch.  I also learned that it is customary to never eat ceviche late in the day because the acidity causes some people intestinal distress if they eat it too late! (not me ;) )  

In between all this touring, I was trying to plan how I was going to get to Bolivia and Colombia to continue my South American tour.  However, there just happened to be an uprising in the South of Peru by miners unhappy about working conditions that ended up shutting down the border to Bolivia by bus!  So since Bolivia was out, I started looking how to get to Colombia by bus.  It looked like it was going to take like 30 hours or something to get to Medellin including a bunch of changes of buses and taxis across borders which didn't sound fun, so I started looking at all of the different airline options to get to Colombia and back before my flight was scheduled on the 19th.  I didn't have much luck finding cheap fares and it was going to be almost $600 for the ticket round trip from Lima to Medellin or Bogota.  Well, I knew I could get a ticket for less than that round trip from Miami so I knew I didn't want to pay that much.  It was about this same time, that I found some online tools for checking award seat availability. When I checked, it looked like some seats had come available to get back to Los Angeles (and onto Tokyo) earlier.  In fact, the overnight flight arriving the morning of July 4th was available!  So I made a quick decision to end my time in South America and spend Independence Day in the good old U.S. of A.  Since my friend Erik Miller was also having a party at his place in Huntington Beach, my course was set!  I was going to get in on the July 4th and leave for Tokyo on the 6th after some hot dogs and beer!
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