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Published: April 6th 2010
Well this is the last week. I guess I am ready to come back to the Uk, if I had the money I would not but i'll defo come back. Its just a thought but I think the term "gringo" might be a derogitory term for white people, i'm not arsed about it but I find that its said toward me by young children and cheeky teenagers, not by adults becasue they dont want to insult us. It's not often as a white man to be spoken about in this fashion, Its quite good in a way. I was in the local gym the other day and it was filled with Peruvians, I didnt even notice that I was the only White person until I was leaving, I thought that when I first came here I would have felt slightly uncomfortable, but know I dont even notice.
Today I half packed my stuff and acquired 4 bottles of Rum for me and my friends at home. The family has prepared the best food for hte next couple of days and it is gorgeous I can tell you a far cry from the usual daily rations of rice
and potato! We toured all the sites we'd been working on today and sort of officially opened them, it was a really feeling being congratulated and thanked by the local chief and completing the projects, its not changing the famialies lives but just makeing them slightly better.
There was a lot of crying when we got on the bus to leave with all our stuff. It was quite emotional. I'm not really great with goodbyes, I think them like hello's, necessary but not important, its whats done and said inbetween that counts......so mine were brief.
As we left the slums for the last time I thought of all the peoples lives we had come across, how the Shining Path had tried to destroy the country and start again creating a government that suspected everyone and commited nearly as many attrocities as the Shining Path, how this gourilla war forced people like the family I lived to flee and live in swelling shanty towns with not services or food.
How in forcing people into the slums outside large cities the Shining Path may have created the economic condictions for a GDP growth spurt due to all the cheap
labour which now surrounded industrial zones................though detrioriating worker rights in the process. This leads on to workers living in safer cities eventually gaining access to better education and health facilities enabling equality to flourish.
I thought about the coming elections next year and what impact they will have for Peru in the coming years, will the country sway to the left and join countries like Boliviar and Venezula in building Socialist republics (Which would be awful in my eyes) or will someone in the mould of Fujimori/Toledo be elected......just without the corruption or state brutality.
Next year will dictate Peru's directon for decades to come, I hope its future can normalise, moving away from its chequered past and some of the attrocities commited. And more importantly I hope that if things change for the better then the family I lived with and the community will be able to better themselves. My god they deserve it.
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