We are in Arequipa now, further south and higher up. It is very dry and pretty sunny here- 76 degrees when we arrived at 2 pm. It is spring right now, so I suppose it will get a little warmer soon. We are living with a host family, Julio and Miriam and their oldish children Diego, Pablo, and Daniela. Also Joni, who lives on the roof, but I'm not sure what's going on there. I think she is one of the maids. The house is super fun, and our accomodations surpassed our expectations. We have a comfortable room with plenty of space and a double bed. I think right now I am on some other house's internet, but there is internet nonetheless. Everything is provided- food, laundry, cleaning, etc.
To be honest, we're a little lost about what's going on in the house, not due to language barriers, but rather lack of orientation. The privacy and mental space is kind of nice, but I am also very curious about what the heck we're doing. We don't start school until Monday. Is there anything we have to do between now and then? What will we do tomorrow? What time are meals? Do we eat with the family or does everyone come as they please? What do people eat for meals? As you can imagine, food is of utmost importance to me right now. Are other people sharing our bathroom? Are we expected to spend our time in the family living space? I probably should make a list of questions for Miriam and ask her tomorrow.
So far this town seems very different. Lima has 9 million people, Arequipa 2 million, Puerto Supe 12,000. Puerto is quiet and friendly and something like summer camp in the sense that everything is close together, there's not much of anything, you walk in the middle of the road, and people all greet each other when they walk by. Lima is a booming metropolis, not fancy like New York but more like San Jose, Costa Rica or something. If you have traveled in Latin America, I'm sure you can imagine the place. Arequipa is supposed to be more of a European city, but so far we haven't seen that part (maybe tomorrow, when we plan to go to the Plaza). What we've seen so far reminds me more of the poor parts of Bejing, really. Or of some other impoverished place that also has a lot of people. Also there are a lot more Quechua people here- descendents of the Incas who still look the way you imagine they did 500 years ago when the Spaniards came.