This goes back to before my laptop died.
21.11.2013 87 °F
We took a tour of Lima with Jose as our tour guide. The first stop, The San Francisco church was where we went into the catacombs under the church. Everything had gold or gold gilding. There were some Rubens paintings that were donated to the church by their rich benefactors with the expectations to a clear pathway to heaven. They had an entire wall with South America's idea to the last supper. With all of the usual disciples, it included women an children in the peripheral. The main course was ...wait for it.... guinea pig. This is a highly regarded complement to the person who is being honored.
We continued on to the Lima Cathedral. This is the only cathedral in Lima and was every bit as striking as any that I've seen in Paris, (not that I've seen them all) What made this cathedral different is that it was built with reeds/bamboo covered in stucco. The reason it was able to last this many years is that Lima is actually desert with very little rainfall. Also, it's withstood earthquakes because it can sway.
Our final stop was in the main square in front of the presidential palace. They were doing the Peru version of changing of the guard. I thought it was a parade at first with the all of the uniforms and the band instruments.
We had lunch at a Sheraton Hotel even though there were countless numbers of street vendors. I think our guide was making sure we didn't get sick as our trip was just beginning. Besides the native Peruvian foods they had sushi. This surprised me until they said that there was a large influence of Chinese in Peru.
After lunch we flew to Iquitos which took about 1 1/2 hours. I sat next to a young lady named Melissa who was finishing her nursing internship at a clinic in Caballo Ranchos, (phonically spelled only as I've not confirmed this) which is on the Amazon. She was returning from Trubillo where she had a months vacation to visit her family. The trip to Lima took 8 hours by bus arriving in Lima at 8am. She had to wait all day for the plane that departed for Iquitos at 3:30pm and as mentioned earlier, took 1 1/2 hours to get to Iquitos. Once there, it was going to take another 12 hours to get back to the clinic that she worked at. Talk about a commute!
Once we arrived in Iquitos we were bused to the boat. We were pleasantly surprised at the accommodations. Quite nice for being on the Amazon. Air conditioned rooms and the staff can really whip up some good Peruvian Food!