Saturday, January 17, 2009

The long journey "home"

I am finally safe at "home" in Cajamarca. I had my last tex-mex meal in Austin with Maggie and Will and zipped and locked my luggage for the night flight that transported me into my work world again. It has been a long trip here. My body is tired and weak, but my spirit is happy to be alive in the wet mountain town I call home this year. I arrived a day earlier than Maggie, and unlike Maggie, I got the red light. The customs officials must have thought I looked a little suspicious and sent me off to the right where some annoying guy was going to go through all my personal belongings. But, there was no one off to the right. No one waiting for me to check my bags and hassle me. So I got the red light, but gave myself the green light. I was in. I made my appearance amongst the screaming crowd and I spotted my sweetheart that had traveled down from Cajamarca to meet me and be my Lima bodyguard.

Two nights later I embarked on an overnight travel, this time by bus to Cajamarca. We took the SUPER VIP bus, where the seats go all 180 degrees down for your full sleeping pleasure. Hugo, my sweetheart, and the rest of the bus was snuggled into their posh reclining seats while I was shuffling back and forth. I can never sleep on the overnight, bumpy, 18 hrs. bus rides from Lima. In fact, I hate them. I never feel more grateful (and tired) then when I arrive in Cajamarca after that "laundry machine" like bus ride.

It is rainy, cloudy and cool here in Cajamarca. My apartment looks abandoned with dust covering the floor. Cajamarca feels so familiar - the openness, the dirty streets, the noise, but it feels like I haven't been here forever and it has only been a month. I feel a little adjustment coming in these days to come. A re-cultural shock. A little cleaning and re-connecting with friends should help the adjustment. Work doesn't start until Monday when Maggie and I visit the office and make the announcement that the gringas are in town. Until then, I need some time to breathe this cool air, sleep in MY bed and ground myself.

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