jueves, 1 de octubre de 2009

La Carreterra Central (9/25)

So I think my computer (or rather netbook) may have a virus or worm? That may explain why it’s not working… that or it just sucks, not sure… and my watch is being problematic, such luck.

Our language classes went into Lima today to gain more exposure to Peruvian culture and enhance our survival skills perhaps. I’m adjusting to living more conservatively - we receive about $2-3/day which translates to 6-8 soles (the Peruvian currency). We do normally receive our meals from our host families (they receive compensation for food and housing). Taking the combi back to Yanacoto from Lima was quite the experience which ended up lasting about 3 hours (should only be ~1-1.5 hours). Starting from Miraflores (a commercialized/Americanized sector of Lima on the coast where we ended with our instructor), 2 other girls and myself took a bus to the end of the avenue back into downtown Lima. During the ride, our bus broke down, but luckily for the driver, we were in heavy traffic, so he and the guy that collects bus fairs and hoards people on and off (el cobrador), were able to shut off the bus, reach into the engine compartment from the front end/glove box, and make some adjustments until it worked. This was the first segment of the journey. We transferred to a combi headed homeward bound (Yanacoto), and had a riveting ride on the Carretera Central (freeway). Weaving in and out of traffic—between other combis, cars, buses and people—and coming within millimeters, sometimes touching—we eventually made it back. The cobrador jumped on and off while the combi was moving, using the outside bar for leverage, to pick up and drop off as many passengers as possible, clinking the coinage he had in his hand. There are head bars above for the standing passengers to grab onto. Least to say, the night on the freeway was a spectacle of intertwining lights, vehicles, swirling dust, people, and vendors scrambling on and off vehicles (while pulled over momentarily) to sell snack foods.

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