Published: August 27th 2010August 9th 2010
Our Cruz Del Sur Imperial Bus
Sunday, August 8th:
***Somehow or other I forgot to post this, so I'm adding it after returning, over two weeks later!
We woke up later than normal (7 or 8am!) since for once there was no rushed schedule. After a decent breakfast in the hostal, we headed out to stroll around Lima, and try to find a laundry mat. We had a week's worth of clothes from El Salvador we'd washed in our room that never dried and we were running out of clean dry clothes. The hostal clerk directed us to a couple of nearby laundry mats and away we went. Being Sunday, we weren't sure how much was open. When we easily located one of the places indicated by the clerk, it was closed, with no sign showing their hours of operations. We asked a nearby vendor and he said it opened at 10am, so we walked down to the main plaza and back. When it opened, we realized the clothes would take a good while to dry completely, so with our 11am checkout fast approaching, Manoli went back to the hostal to pack and I minded the clothing. After 20 minutes or so, I went in to
Dinner served aboard our Cruz Del Sur Bus
check on our dryer and was told the dryer wouldn't stop running until the timer ran out! Being pressed for time, I decided to play that little known game called "Snatch the clothes from the spinning dryer." I finally won and returned to the hostal. After finding out where our Cruz Del Sur bus terminal was, we decided we had plenty of time until the 3:30pm departure and hoofed it.
After at least 2 or 3 miles or carrying our backpacks and dragging our luggage, and a brief stop at McDonald's for coffee, we reached the terminal. The terminal wasn't all that big, but pretty good-sized and modern. Being after noon by now, we went up to the coffee shop/cafeteria and had lunch. I had a couple of tamales (not tamales, but similar) and Manoli had fried eggs. I had already bought our tickets and reserved seats months ago for our bus trip from Lima to Arequipa and then from Arequipa to Puno, our first stop. The bus would leave Lima about 3:30pm and arrive in Arequipa at 6:30am the next morning. Then, our bus from Arequipa to Puno would leave at 8:30am and arrive in Puno by 3:30pm
Interior of our Cruz Del Sur Imperial Bus
or so. Or at least that was what the schedule was. We checked our luggage and got on the bus, a very luxurious, double-decker one with in-flight… err in-road movies, restrooms, comfy seats, PCs with internet access, GPS, and drink and meal service. Puts the best of Greyhound to shame! I don't remember what movie we watched or dinner we ate, but all went well that evening with both of us sleeping most of the night. Apparently, we had made some detours and had some delays along the way, and by 6am or so we found out we wouldn't reach Arequipa until at least 8:30am. We relaxed briefly when the "stewardess" told us she'd called ahead and they would hold our bus for us, but… see tomorrow's post for how well that went!
There are more photos below