Yesterday morning started very early . . . . 4:30 am early. Now even for morning people (what I affectionately call those crazy people that enjoy getting up before 9:00 am . . . .or 10:00 am . . .) that is quite early! Surprisingly enough I woke up on my own. While I was pondering whether or not to actually look at the time and see if I really needed to get out of bed, I heard a soft tap on the door; though at the time I couldn’t tell if it was coming from the door or the wall. It was so quiet I convinced myself it wasn’t real. Once it repeated a few minutes later, I realized that someone was indeed knocking on my door in the hopes of waking me up. After I rolled out of bed I proceeded to make sure everything was all packed and ready to go. Then to my great dismay I realized I’d forgotten to pack my tooth brush! What a rookie travel mistake, I even remember carefully setting it aside while I packed in Walla Walla but for some reason it never made it into my bag. Oh well, at least I had toothpaste. So far, besides the whole no tooth brush situation, my first 24 hours in Peru were still going great! After staying in the home of our gracious host, Tio Will, by 5 am we were off to catch our flight from Lima to Cusco. We made it with plenty of time to spare and I’m not proud to admit that I had breakfast at the McDonald’s in the airport. I know, I know, how could I eat at McDonald’s when I’m in Peru! Well the answer is simple, it was an airport and the pickings were slim (at least if you wanted breakfast food, which I did). I don’t remember much of the flight from Lima to Peru cause I managed to sleep on the plane. Now this is a big deal to me, I’ve gone on 10+ hour flights and barely slept 30 minutes. We got off the plane and were picked up by our ADRA contact Willy, who drove us to our hotel. Below is a picture of the inside of our hotel:

Hostal Suecia I (Lupo)

After we got settled into our rooms our hosts were kind enough to make us some tea that’s traditionally used in Peru and other South American countries to help with altitude sickness. Due to its legal standing in the United States it will not be named in this blog, but it rhymes with mocha and starts with a C.

Coca Leaf Tea (Lupo)

We then talked business with Willy (our ADRA contact) and had a very pleasant time catching up with him. Now it was food time! We asked our hotel if they had any recommendations that had vegetarian options and they suggested a great restaurant, but unfortunately for us it was a long ways away. After we managed to walk the ten or so feet across the street to the restaurant we arrived! Though the journey was long and the roads road was treacherous, it was all worth it in the end. We ordered a couple of dishes like quinoa cream soup, a quinoa omelet and the tradition Peruvian dish Papa a la huancaína (sliced boiled potatoes covered in a spicy cheese sauce). Though this dish pictured below is usually served cold since we had it cold the night before we decided to live life on the edge and order it warm! I quickly discovered that I preferred it warm.

Papas (Lupo)

While eating we met with a representative from Maranatha so she and Trei, the ASWWU representative for Project Mosacc Wasi, could talk logistics. After lunch we decided to do touristy things like shop for souvenirs. Though I hate haggling prices it was a fun experience and I ended up getting a few things though I won’t mention them in this blog because I know my sister is reading and that would spoil everything! We ended the day with dinner at a restaurant that, to my great delight, had a fantastic vegetarian burger. We made our way back to the hotel with the hopes of catching up on some lost sleep and much needed rest from our almost nonstop traveling. Happy Sabbath from Peru!

–Caity Lupo