Sunday, December 13, 2009

Bonfires and buses

It´s my final day in Huachaco, and it couldn´t be more relaxing. I arrived Friday night around 11'30 and didnt have a hotel reservation, so I asked the taxi driver to recommend something. I ended up at a hostel called Hostal La Suiza, which has turned out to be great. Cheap, really nice and helpful staff, and lots of young travelers. Within 30 minutes on Friday night I´d made friends with a group of girls (a couple Norwegians who have been here for 3 weeks doing absolutely nothing, which is admirable I suppose, a DJ from NYC, and 2 crazy girls from Detroit). We ended up somehow assembling a posse of locals and us and heading to the beach to build a bonfire. It was a ton of fun!! This town is so cool because it´s right along the beach, so there´s a big beach culture and every night there are bonfires and music. This is the kind of place I needed to be.

Glad I came when I did and didn´t spend another minute in Chiclayo! Wow that city was a bust. Although my day on Friday was great. As planned, I took a combi to the nearby city of Lambayeque where I visited the Museo del Señor del Sipan, which was super interesting (he was buried under about 25 layers of gold and silver jewelry covered in precious stones, textiles guilded with gold, etc, not to mentioned buried with a couple concubines, a bunch of guards, a llama, a dog, and one main guard who´s feet had been severed, to symbolize that he would stay there forever guarding) and so the museum is just packed with all the crazy jewelry and treasures that were found in his tomb. How one man can wear so many necklaces is beyond me. You know me, I was totally fascinated by the stone and metal work, and the insane earrings that everyone wore, which were made of metals and stones and were about 5 inches in diameter literally, must have weighed a ton!! Anyway, after that museum I also took another combi to the nearby town of Tucumé, where I hiked up a million steps and got a spectacular look at some ancient pyramid ruins.

On the way back from the pyramids I took a mototaxi back to the highway, and got to talking to the driver. Turns out he´s a shaman, as are many people in the area, and when I expressed interest, he offered to show me the whole shamanism area of his house. I couldn´t refuse. I met his wife and one of his kids, and then he took me to a small area closed off with tapestries behind the house, with a blanket on the floor covered in herbs and potions and animal skulls. I of course took a million pictures, being the raging tourist that I am. Anyway, he put on his pancho and his hat and asked me a bunch of questions about my love life, because he says he specializes in working with lovers. Since I´m single, he seemed slightly stumped, but still he selected a bottle of what smells like jasmine and some other herbs, and poured the oil allover my hands and had me rub them together. As I did, he started drinking from the bottle which I thought was very strange, and before I knew it he was spitting it back all over my face in a spray. He says it will bring me good luck... I think he means with love, but I´m secretly hoping it will just help me not get robbed or abducted by guerrillas in the jungle.

Up next... tonight at 10pm I will be beginning a horrendous 29 hour bus journey on a budget bus, no less, all the way to Arequipa. 9 hours from Trujillo to Lima, then waiting 3 hours, and then 17 hours to Arequipa down south, where I will meet up with my friend Kieran, an Irish guy I met during my TEFL course in Buenos Aires who is now teaching in Peru. Wish me luck, because I have a feeling that I will need it!! I will be hopping on the bus with dramamine, snacks, and possibly a classy box of wine, just in case. Anything to help me sleep.


Anonymous said...

ERICA! I love it, following your travels totally, and absolutely sure there ar elike ten million other little stories you don't have time to tell!!!!!!
Have a great time, and thanks for entertaining us!

heather said...

if possible, each story tops the one before...and i hang on every word and image. keep 'em coming! xoxo