Since my last post, Dad and I hung out (yet again) in Arequipa and then spent a weekend in the frigid Chivay in Colca Canyon. This week can be simply summed up as "The week of Great Food and Long Hikes". The Arequipan province is known throughout Peru for its cuisine and it did not let us down. Dad and I also did several hikes through rivers and trails leading us to waterfalls, remote villages, and excellent views.
After several hours of flight delays (30 minutes in Arequipa, 4 hours in Lima, and 3 hours in Newark), we finally landed in Charlotte, NC on June 10th at about 5:00pm. I am still absolutely flustered by the stark differences between that South American country and this one. Private cars, huge interstates, chain restaurants - and the list of differences goes on and on and on.
After about nearly a week of being in the States again, I'm finally getting accustomed to life again (finding a job, registering for classes for the Fall semester, seeing family). Though, some things have still not changed: I'm still talking to myself in Spanish and driving my car way too fast.
Peru is a remarkable country. Often, as I listen to Cumbia (the Peruvian/Colombian music), I find myself reminiscing. I will take my memories of that country, the people, the music, the food, and the culture to me to UNC and wherever else life takes me. The invaluable lessons I learned and relationships I formed will never leave me.
The question I'm asked most often now is: "Will you go back to Peru?". Without hesitation nor doubt, my answer is simply: "Yes".
Thank you for sticking with me and this blog throughout my travels. For the last time, like they say in Peru: Ciao Amigo!