The airport was quick and easy. Customs was a breeze. The guy was nice–cordial. We exchanged our money at a no commission stand. $100 for 260 Solares. Not bad. We then went to get our luggage. I sat my carry on bags down and after a while I noticed a nice looking dog standing onto of my bag. The security officer on the other end of the dog, connected by a leash, asked what I had in the bag. I had two oranges, which I bought in the Newark airport. He took them. I asked if I could have them, but that was futile. We both laughed. They were nice oranges. I hope he enjoys them.
We found a van for $30 or 80 solares and had our first Peruvian traffic experience. It was awesome, kinda Darwinian–every man for himself, survival of the fittest, loser leave town match. It was orchestrated chaos. All the drivers knew what they were doing and they did it with zeal. It was like if there was an empty traffic spot in any lane, everyone “dove” for it at the same time.
There was a precise recklessness to it all. The other thing I noted was how they used their horns. It was not punitive horn blowing like what you experience in Greenville. Here, there is a lot of horn blowing, but you don’t sense they are mean about it. It’s a polite warning and even when the horn seems more like “you cut me off” it doesn’t have that angry-Greenville-feel.
The quote of the drive was from Ansa–“I want to go back to the cold air.” The humidity and heat was quite city in the summer. Sticky. Thick sticky.
The apartment is in the nice part of town. That’s a relative statement. Everything I’ve seen so far is rundown and dilapidated. It belongs to the couple who founded the mission in Pucallpa. They have it to service friends and ministries who come down for the work like us.
There are three baths and four bedrooms–all small, but perfect. The dining and living room are together as one room. We slept with the windows open and a light breeze flowing through. That was nice. We were all in bed and asleep by 1AM. Tristen slept on the couch because she wanted too. Haydn and Ansa had one of the two bunk bed rooms. Lucia and I had a double-bed room. David and Mary had the master bedroom.
We awoke at 10AM to the singing of jackhammers, horns, and extraneous street noise. Oh, the beauty of living in the city. It’s really awesome to enmesh into the life of another culture and experience what they experience, to see what they see. It’s kinda Gospel-like–to become others (Philippians 2:3-7)
Off to breakfast.