5:00 a.m., mine and Molly’s alarm clock starts chiming. I can’t blame my fatigue on jetlag since Peru is essentially only an hour or two different from Denver, as far as time zones go. I rub my eyes and remember why I’m so tired – there’s still quite a bit of alcohol sloshing through my stomach. I remember the craze that was last night – partying with the locals in a bar that played American and Peruvian music videos on the wall. So many tequila shots.
I’m at a cheap hotel in Paracas, Peru and I can smell the ocean air coming in off the back patio of my room. Molly is hustling, “You need the bathroom?” she asks. Still in my pajamas I step out of the room and heave myself up a ladder located to the right of our bedroom door. Each room has a rooftop balcony that overlooks the beach and ocean. It’s sunrise and the world is squinting.
I get dressed, repack my overly huge suitcase and walk out the room to go search for breakfast and the others in my group. The air in Peru is heavy, even in the mountain areas, there’s nothing dry about the climate. It makes me feel alive and my skin is glistening. We eat a bread roll and drink deep dark Peruvian coffee. It’s so perfect. The simplicity of Peru makes me feel so much less complicated. They aren’t brunching with friends, ordering a vegan breakfast pot pie to accompany their blood orange mimosa. It’s just bread, home made butter and coffee.
To go to the Islas Ballestas we have to reserve a guía and a boat. We slip into large orange life vests and scurry onto the boat. The ride is lovely, the skies are a foggy white at 7 a.m. and the sea water occasionally splashes a bit and is cool and salty. We look at sea lions and birds and penguins and everything is picturesque and I can’t believe that this is my morning.
If you get to Peru, visit Paracas and definitely visit the Islas Ballestas. Everything is picture perfect and so soothing.
To see more of my photos, look here.