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Published: January 24th 2013
Lima to Easter Island and Pitcairn Island
On our first day in Lima we took a shopping tour to the Indian Market, famous for having just about anything one would want to buy in Peru and the prices are very good. Bargaining is expected, and from there it is up to us to get the best deals. The bus ride took almost an hour to get there because the traffic is bad. There is no public commuter rail, only local busses and taxis to carry the 9 million people to and from work.
Peru is known as the largest silver producer in South America so there is much very beautiful silver jewelry available. I bought a pretty pendant and earrings with small stones set in silver. Alpaca wool is plentiful, and weavers produce some lovely sweaters, scarves, and gloves. The best quality is from baby llamas. The market is immense, but we found our way back to the bus at the appointed time – 5:15. Our guide counted, and one man was missing. His wife was worried, of course, and no wonder. The man was in a motorized wheelchair. The hunt began. Not many of the shopkeepers spoke English, but some who did started the search. This continued about 45 minutes when it was decided that the bus should drive around the market to see if he was on the street. Another twenty minutes and we were back at the start. No luck. Another man from the tour company joined the wife as it was decided to let the bus return to the ship and the two would remain there and take a taxi back to the ship. So, by this time we were in the midst of rush hour traffic. We inched along until we came to a major street. Our guide’s cell phone rang, and we were told the man had taken off in his chair to see what was outside the market and didn’t tell his wife where he was going. So, instead of getting back about 6, we got back close to 7:30. As it happened, we had a bar-b-que on the Lido Deck that lasted until 8, so we were able to get something to eat, albeit rather late.
The next day we went on a tour with Karen (of Cruise Critics) to archeological ruins within the city. One site was closed for the day and we drove all around it, but the other one was open and is under some restoration. This is right down Bruce’s alley and he really enjoyed the tour. We got back to the ship and up to the Lido for the sail-away.
Pisco, Peru was our next stop. Here we took a tour to Tambo Colorado, an archeological site about 2 hours out of town. It is a major Inca complex along the Pisco River dating back to the 1500’s. Since the complex was never buried, it is in quite good condition and the rooms are more easily identified as the spa area or living areas. This whole area is very arid and sandy. Think Sahara Desert and you get the picture. Nothing without irrigation will grow and water is scarce. With irrigation, there are fields of asparagus, artichoke, and even orange trees; although over 120 varieties of potatoes are their most prevalent crops. People go sand boarding on the hills. It rains only an inch or maybe two per year. We left the ruins and headed to a ranch where we had a typical Peruvian lunch of lamb stew with potatoes, asparagus, huge lima beans, corn, carrots, and onions, and a nice dessert. Of course, we were served Pisco Sours, the country’s famous drink made of Pisco, a kind of strong wine; add lime juice, beaten egg whites and a dash of angostura bitters. That is the ladies drink. They are delicious! Men drink Pisco straight, we were told. During lunch we were entertained by some Peruvian musicians and dancing girls. It was a delightful day.
We left Pisco and are heading for Easter Island, hoping to be able to tender ashore – weather permitting. The trip is four sea days from Peru. The Island is owned by Chile, and therefore goes by Chilean time, which is the same as Ft. Lauderdale time. So, here we are, two weeks out of Ft. Lauderdale and on the same time. Last night was the last internet service until we reach Easter Island on Monday. (Bruce is upset that we will not see the playoff games.) What internet we have gotten has been extremely slow, so I will not even try to upload pictures until we are near New Zealand. I do not know how the Polynesian Islands will be for reception and will check that out later.
My bridge partner has been sick the last few days. I have played with a couple of other people –one good, one not so nice, and am not playing today. Beth said she will play tomorrow, and that will be nice. Meanwhile, Bruce continues to attend the lectures—some good, some not so good. Tonight is our third formal dinner which makes fifteen to go. We have seen a few good movies and some good entertainment. Do not know what tonight’s entertainment will be like, but comedians are usually not our cup of tea. The movie tonight is “Funny Girl”. We may just come back to the cabin and watch a Hitchcock movie we brought with us.
We are looking forward to Easter Island, and I will write about that soon.
Here we are in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with no internet or satellite to connect us to the outside world. Of course the ship can send and receive, but our access is very, very limited. So, I will continue the saga of Easter Island.
We anchored off the shore of the island and, although the waters were a bit rough, tenders were launched to take people ashore at the rate of about fifty per trip. This continued throughout the morning as the seas became rougher. I had decided not to venture forth, but Bruce was going on our scheduled trip at 1:50. We were told not to go early because there were no facilities on shore to wait for our bus. Then the announcement came on saying all tours were delayed 90 minutes, making ours 3:20. About 2:20, Bruce was first in line for the next tender when the Captain came on the loud speaker saying there would be no more trips ashore because of the waves increasing. He would begin to bring people back now. As people re-boarded, we heard stories of the tender front window blowing in, and everyone getting soaked with the waves coming in as the tender turned around and headed for shore again to assess the damages. The stories of being bounced around and doused with water continued. Finally, about 7 PM everyone was aboard and we could leave. By then the rain was really coming down and no one who came from the shore had dry clothes on. We were disappointed we couldn’t go ashore, but thankful everyone made it back safely.
We sailed two days to Pitcairn Island of Mutiny on the Bounty fame. There are only about 70 people remaining on the island now. Occasionally a sailor may decide to stay, but not recently. As we neared, the Captain came on again saying we would not be able to have the residents come aboard this time because a couple of weeks ago a cruise ship stopped there and 90% of the people came down with the bad flu going around in the States. 35% of them were still sick, and there was no way the Captain would cross contaminate us with the flu bug. So, no visit from the Islanders. They all have the same last name, we heard – Christian. This means we are headed for Papeete, arriving on Sunday. We hope the tropical depression has passed by then!
Tot: 2.081s; Tpl: 0.061s; cc: 9; qc: 60; dbt: 0.0455s; 1; m:saturn w:www (22.214.171.124); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.3mb