Three Things Thursday

Its the first Thursday of the month, so it’s time for three things…

…that light up, play music, and get you wet.




Paragliding from the Prom

Paragliding from the Prom

I reached back into the archives for this picture for A Word In Your Ear’s latest Word A Week challenge: float.

Every weekend, paragliders line up to jump off the cliffs next to the parque del amor on the malecón in Miraflores, Lima. The placid ocean as it rolls into the bay, and the background of the cerro and Chorrillos make it a spectacular spot to spend a while people-watching and enjoying the sun.

Word A Week – Float

Let’s do the time warp

Photo in the Seoul Museum of History

Original and best!

I spent last weekend catching up with a friend in Lima who delivered the shocking news that the ramshackle fleet of venerable combis that furnished the soundtrack to my life in Miraflores is no more. More

30km Challenge – 10.6km

Kilometre 0 - The day starts here

Kilometre 0 – The run starts here

The Challenge has started well, hurrah for willpower. Running, blogging, and drinking water all proceed as planned. Today I ran at a leisurely pace with a camera in my hand and the sun in my heart, and on the streets. Spring is definitely here.

Today I repeated yesterday’s 5.29km route, running a little later in the afternoon as the sun took a while to break through the Lima fog. Regular photo breaks (at each kilometre) and my customary exercise stops kept things fresh all the way around the circuit, so despite taking it easy I clocked in at 29 minutes and 18 seconds, only a little slower than yesterday’s PB, passing the 5k mark at 27:40.

And here is the route….

Kilometre 1

Kilometre 1


Getting drunk – Lima life

This is so clever, and so vital, that I couldn’t help but share it with all of you.

Magic Billboard (BBC News)

I think I’ve mentioned that I live in one of the nicest parts of the city. I am surrounded by grass verges on the main avenues, an impeccably manicured stretch of malecón with park after park at the top of the cliffs, shady plazas of trees, flowerbeds and benches. From where I sit, you wouldn’t know this is one of the driest cities on earth. But further away from the financial centre and the shiny apartment blocks of the expanding middle class, the dust creeps back to the edges of the roads.

The city already consumes more water than it can source from the rivers which run down from the Andes. Rivers which only started to fill in late December and are already receding again. Innovations like this billboard are brilliant and essential.

In – genie – ous

The one big highlight of my y-ear. The one time, no matter how far it may be from the glory days, that I get to put on a character and give my diction a run-out. The one time I get to dress up funny, learn some lines and avoid the furniture for the season of good ch-ear, and it is all brought down by an ear-ily last minute unfortunateness. I felt qu-ear for some time, but finally succumbed last week to a nasty cold, which app-eared to spread sideways through the sinuses until my greatest f-ear was realised. More


 True Arches of Gold signifying culinary treasures within

It is here again; Mistura, the comestible festival. This 11 days of awesomeness is in its fifth year and is a prominent feature in the Lima cultural calendar. More

You know you’re in Peru when…

The exit sign on the door of the impossibly rickety old bus is in Korean.

Someone has dug a pit of flames and rocks two meters from a childrens’ climbing frame.

The second question every new person asks (after ‘where are you from?’) is, “do you love our food?” Not the country, not the people, not what do you like in general. Straight to the chase.

The temperature hits 15°C and there’s a national panic about protecting the vulnerable from the cold, and articles on how to drive in wet conditions.

A pen full of scruffy guinea-pigs makes you think, “they don’t look very appetising,” rather than, “poor, cute little things.”

Being at the bottom of the table for the world cup qualifiers does not call for pessimistic reviews of where national football has gone wrong, but for good cheer in the face of a possible win against Venezuela.

‘Wanka farma’ is not an unreasonable or laughable name for a pharmacy.

And most of all – you’re surrounded by this kind of national pride and wonderful silliness…Peru, Nebraska

¡En la gloria!

August. Lima. Resfriada.

Lima in August is a relentless slew of mind-numbing, toe-numbing weatherlessness. Well wrapped-up Limeños scurry about under a sky that doesn’t even have the energy to be grey and cloudy, just a constant, sterile white. There’s a lot of snivelling. “¿Estas resfriada?” I have been asked by concerned colleagues on numerous occasions as I swab my face with another run of soggy bog roll. No, I haven’t got a cold, I’m just set to ‘constant drip’ until September.

However, today we are transported to some form of glorious alternate reality with all the benefits of the murky winter and none of the drawbacks. The streets were wet this morning. Not the usual slight damp of the sea mist, actually wet, with real water, as if it had [gasp] rained! And the sky – a clear, wonderful blue!

Arriving at school, the heavy, low-hanging fog of the last couple of weeks had lifted from the nearby mountains to reveal them in all their emerald glory. These hills – barren, brown dust from October to July – have sprung a lush carpet of greenery during the winter holiday. Lit by the sun and fog-free, I finally understand why Pachacámac is known as the last green valley in Lima.

Shake, rattle and roll

Like firemen, or the boyscouts, or any other hardy, resourceful groups you care to compare, Perú is ensuring its citizens are always prepared. With this in mind the national civil defence institution (Indeci) organised a nationwide earthquake and tsunami drill on 31st May. More

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