I’m back in Lima once again, four more days until I’m home, this is the homestretch. I ate my last bit of home-cooked jungle food, cecina, platanos fritos, arroz and ensalada de cebolla, palta, y tomate, con jugo de papaya, with Rosa and then hopped onto my plane, saying goodbye for now to humidity, charapitas, and mosquitos. Iquitos was like a kind of wonderful summation of my trip to Perú–love, food, exotic drinks, and dancing. The night before I left Rosa’s sister took me around the town on her moto. The wind in my face, gripping the back handles, half-assedly trying to understand the things she was saying, I felt a kind of peace settle over me as I thought about my experiences here. This trip has turned into everything that I would have wanted it to be had I scripted it out. The fact that I didn’t at all makes it all the better. Without any kind of direction, it has evolved into a very balanced and full experience–I spent a good chunk of time in three very distinct and different places in Perú, representative of the 3 main types of climates here: the mountains (las sierras), the coast (la costa), and the jungle (la selva). I met incredibly hospitable people and tried all kinds of different foods typical of each region. I danced frequently and drank little (comparative to my normal alcohol intake). I gained a functional ability in the usage of Castellano. And ten million other little things that make up the stars in the sky. Because these memories will light up whatever darkness of solitude I may suffer in the year to come. Did I say memories? It doesn’t seem like the right term. Memories are something in the past. I feel like there are things on this journey that I picked up that I will carry with me for the rest of my life, that will grow inside of my heart because they dug out a little space for themselves there. Anyone who can burrow their way into love will stay there forever if this is where they would like to be. The doors are open and here wine is served 24 hours. Why go home again when you can be drunk all the time with the friend?

Author: manderson

I live in NYC.

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