A Day Out of Town

Yesterday (Sunday) we took a quick trip out of the city, straight up the Central Highway. The land here is incredibly arid, with nothing growing on the mountainsides. It really looks like the moon, much more barren than the American Southwest. But as we got out of town, the pace slowed and the smaller towns were nicer. When people in Lima want to get away from the cloudy skies of winter, this is where they come. This picture is of the river that cuts the valley for the highway. It is very brown because it is coming through nothing but dirt. If you look on the right at the hillside above the houses, you can see the barren hills. If you look close, you can see that te sky is getting bluer, but is very hazy at the horizon on the right. This is the cloud bank that hovers over Lima in the winter. At this altitude, we are starting to get out of it. In Lima (where the river if flowing to) it was cold and cloudy all day.

Here is my meal, two local fares. On the left is deep fried calamari. On the right is the remnants of my Ceviche, raw fish cured in lemon juice and some spices. Both were served with Peruvian lemons (which are more like limes) and regular and sweet potatoes.

 A family came to eat at the next table and they were so cute, I had to take their picture. When I asked Fr. Linus how the "nuclear family" fared in Peru, he said "not well." In Lima, it is very common for a man to live with a woman for a few years, have a few kids, and move on. She then eventually takes up with another man, thinking "he will be the one" and the cycle repeats again. Many children are raised without ever knowing their own fathers.

Here is a sample of the hand-painted tiles around the cloister wall. They were made in the 17th(?) century in Seville, Spain. There are squares with patterns like this, separated by lines of figures, and then other patters. No two are the same, but all of them are nice. They are protected under the walls and so are still in very good condition.