Showing posts from June, 2011


I've been home for a week now.  I haven't completely unpacked.  Not everything has been put in their rightful places.  I don't feel like I have completely gotten back into the swing of my daily life.  But here I am, on an early Saturday morning, pouring through a travel magazine, looking for where I can take my next adventure.

It's almost sick and wrong.

Everyone keeps asking, "Where are you going next??". I guess that's what is expected of me now.  Not that I mind, of course.  I want to hit the road again to find something different around the next corner.  And if both finances and vacation days were plentiful, the next trip would happen ASAP. 

Last summer was filled with unexpected trips.  Little ones that overtook the summer.  This summer, I've gone on a trip hiatus.  Nothing is planned.  Nothing can be planned.  Mostly, cause of my lack of vacation days, but mostly because I need a break.

The South American Adventure was an 8 month planning projec…

The South American Adventure - Astrid y Gaston

Our last night in Lima was spent having a fantastic dining experience. We reserved our table a the day after the San Pellegrino list of the top 50 Restaurants in the World was released. Astrid y Gaston was ranked #42. The thought was that we would have a great last meal before we made it back home. It was the best idea we had on our trip. And we had a lot of good ideas.

This was our chance to finally dress up (been lugging around a cute outfit this whole time) and see more of the city at night. Adele kept trying to figure out a time to go Salsa dancing, but we were running so hard and the weekends were never spent in Lima, so the final night really was the only time we had for a night on the town. Sadly (for Adele), there would be no Salsa dancing. But there would be eating. Plenty of eating.

The plan was simple. We would chow hard on the Tasting Menu. 12 Courses. 3 Hours. 170 Soles. Add some wine to the mix and we were in for an evening to remember. Let's get start…

The South American Adventure - Day 16!! (Our Final Day)

Day 16 - Homeward Bound

I woke up this morning with the iPhone in my hand.  I had obviously heard the alarm and turned it off, but promptly went back to sleep and woke up 25 minutes later when I heard Adele's alarm go off.  I can only hope this is not an omen for things to come.

We were highly groggy this morning.  Mostly from the late hour we fell asleep, but partly from the dinner last night.  We were still really full and needed to relax while food continued to digest.  Unfortunately, we had to catch a flight.  We did most of the packing last night, so it wasn't a massive production.

Checking out of the hotel and getting through the airport was no big deal.  We're well versed with the Lima airport at this point.  So now we begin the wait...

Things I'll Miss About South America - 

Coca Tea.  I'm not exactly sure why Coca Tea has captured my love so much.  I attacked it with gusto when we got to Cusco because I was completely worried about altitude sickness (not a…

The South American Adventure - Day 15!!

Day 15 - #42

Morning...where apparently I am unable to sleep in no matter where I am.

We had the conversation last night.  Is there anything else we had to do in Lima??  The answer was  We saw a few cathedrals.  We went to a few parks.  We wandered around a few neighborhoods.  We made it to the beach.  We hit just about everything on the list of "things to see in Lima".

Originally, we didn't have a full day in Lima.  We were doing an overnight flight to Ft Lauderdale tonight, then flying to Chicago early tomorrow morning.  But a few months ago, Spirit cancelled our flight and rebooked us.  They tried to rebook us to come home on about Day 12, which would have been fine had we not been on Easter Island at the time.  The only other flight out was on Wednesday.  The problem was that we were getting in around 11p instead of 9a.  Which will make for an interesting work day on Thursday.  But I digress (and maybe should be telling this story tomorrow)...

Since w…

The South American Adventure - Day 14!!

Day 14 - Sleep Away The Day (aka "It's Going to be a Low Key Day")

We found out that in our room, if you open the door and lean in the hallway, you can get WiFi.  I'm pretty sure that's going to be our stance for the next two days.  Or, we can just sit in the courtyard and play online.  Either way, we can be a little more connected today.  The plan was to sleep until we wake up, then take it easy during the day.  Which is great in theory, but when you bring together a night owl plus an early(ish) bird, there will always be someone up for hours before another person. least there's a blog to be written.  I do love that Rummy app on the iPad.  And I can easily go to the courtyard for the WiFi.  And breakfast.  Yeah, that's the idea...

After many days (3 maybe 4), I was able to use a hair dryer and a flat iron.  I'm pretty sure the heavens parted and I heard the angels singing.  It. Was. Glorious.  We didn't even leave the hotel before 1p.  …

The South American Adventure - Day 13: Interstitial!!

Day 13 - Interstitial

Since today was a travel day and we're getting to the end of the journey (complete with being ready to go home), I thought it was fitting to have a bonus blog post that just dealt with things I miss about home.  I figure I'll have another post at the end about what I'll miss in South America, but for now...

What I Miss From Home

Fruit and Veggies.  There are a lot of meat, starches and carbs around these parts.  Plus, we aren't supposed to eat some of the fruits because of pesticides or such things.  I am desperate for fruit and expect to eat only fruit for a few days when I get back home.

Pizza.  I could devour a Malnati's right now.  Then again, I would much rather have a home cooked meal by me.  Or by Mom.  Or by anyone else.  Restaurants are great, but in moderation.  Which brings me to...

Cooking/Baking.  I wanted to do both before I left, but it was bad timing.  I want to cook when I get home.  And I have decided I want to perfect Macaro…

The South American Adventure - Day 13!!

Day 13 - An All Day Flying Adventure

Should I be concerned that Day 13 will be spent on two planes??  I'm not a superstitious person,  And if we're talking about numbers...there are three days before we go home. And if you add the day and month together, you equal the year (6+5=11)!!  I just noticed that today :)

Easter Island was at an end.  We conquered the island and knew that while we would never be back, we would have the best of memories and experiences.  I hope to be able to close my eyes and think of the Moai during sunset.  Or when we were the only people at Tongariki.  I do have the pictures, of course, but the feelings...the sense...that's what I want to remember. 

Wake.  Pack.  Breakfast.  Finish packing.  Check-out.  We're pros at this point.  I was excited for breakfast because of the oatmeal.  Oh, the oatmeal.  The guava juice was good too, but I couldn't shut up about the oatmeal.  Unfortunately, Vai Moana didn't get the "Carrie …

The South American Adventure - Day 12!!

Day 12 - Bucket List

I don't think I really had a Travel Bucket List.  There are places I would like to go, but none I would consider part of a "Bucket List."  It wasn't until I got here that I realized Easter Island was on that Bucket List.  Maybe you don't know what's on your list until you get there...

Before I went into an almost instant sleep as my head hit the pillow last night, we had plans.  Let's leave around 530a and watch the sun rise over the Moai.  Cool!!

So the alarm got us up.  It was very dark and very early.  We got ready and noticed there was a tiny amount of WiFi in the room.  So I checked sunrise.  8a.  Ok then.  We hung around the room for a bit, then around 630a, we started to gather our stuff to leave.  When we made it to our car, not only was it so dark that we could barely see the vehicle, but the gate to the hotel was closed.  As in...we aren't going anywhere for awhile. Alrighty then...back to sleep we would go.  Breakfast s…

The South American Adventure - Day 11!!

Day 11 - I Win!!

Early Morning.  Very Early Morning - 

The iPhone says 1243a.  The iPad probably says 143a (I haven't pulled it out yet).  There are a few free WiFi connections, but none want to connect.  And so begins the overnight stay in Santiago.

We can't check in to our flight until 4a.  I'm still battling a low-grade migraine, so that's good fun.  The airport is surprisingly overnight friendly.  There are food places.  Plenty of seats.  Even shopping, if we wanted to.  For the most part, we'd like to sleep.  But it's not terribly conducive at this point.  Adele just picked up a $7 bottle of water.  I don't even know how many Pesos that is.  If we thought we had a problem with a 1 for 3 conversion in Lima, we are so screwed with a 1 for 452 (or 500 as I'm calling it) conversion in Chile.

To make matters worse, I didn't shower yesterday (yep...the TMI keeps on coming).  Which means my hair is an incredibly greasy mess.  So that brings on my gene…

The South American Adventure - Day 10!!

Day 10 - Death and Flying

The Gran Bolivar was delightfully ornate and transported us into another time.  But I think we are both happy that this was a one night deal.  The problem with old hotels is that they are just...old.  While it sounds stupid to say, it is the simplest explanation.  They can shine up the lobby and restaurants and they can paint the hallways.  They can add WiFi and a TV with rabbit ears (yes), but it is not a modern hotel with modern comforts. Take for example, the bed.  

There was an episode of I Dream of Jeannie when Major Nelson's mother came to town.  For whatever reason, Jeannie didn't want her there (I don't remember the episodes that well...).  Tony's mom insisted on sleeping on the couch and Jeannie blinked a door in the place of the couch cushions because it would be more uncomfortable (Jeannie really was mean, wasn't she??).  While Tony's mom loved it (it was good for her back), the bed I slept in last night (that could possibly…

The South American Adventure - Day 9!!

Day 9 - On the Bus Again and a Haunted Hotel

We've confirmed several times.  Today's bus ride is only 7 hours. I say only, because it is what we expected.  7 hours is doable when you know it's happening.  16 is hard when you think it is half the amount of time.  I can get through a book, play some Rummy on the iPad...totally doable.

We are on our way back to Lima.  The Peruvian journey is almost at an end.  This doesn't mean we are done with Peru, but the rest of our time in the country will be spent only in Lima.  Though right now, Lima is only a stopping off point for the day before we hit the "3" of our Big 3 (Machu Picchu, Nazca and Easter Island).  It will be nice to get back to Lima, since we really haven't had time to explore.  Though really, the big time Lima exploration (and shopping) will happen when we get back from Easter Island next week.

We're at the point in the trip where I don't entirely know what day it is.  I know where we are g…