Tagged: Peru

Photo Diary: Heads up.

Spent yesterday at the Museo Pedro de Osma in the Lima neighborhood of Barranco admiring colonial religious everything, including Cuzco school paintings of archangels, inlaid mosaics of the Virgin and — my favorite — some truly awesome 18th century sculptures of heads. From top to bottom: Jesus, St. John the Baptist and an anonymous figure who I’m convinced could have been a member of Los Bukis.

P.S. I’m still in Peru. But you can find this week’s Gallerina guide to artsy goodness over at WNYC.

Adventures in white-knuckle Andean bus rides.

Over the weekend, we took an epic 10-hour bus ride from the northern highland city of Cajamarca, to the Utcubamba Valley town of Leimebamba. (See a map here.) The most dramatic portion of the trip is the journey across the Río Marañón Valley. The fun begins when you come up over a high mountain pass and plunge into the valley, which is vertiginously steep — with mountains that rise almost 10,000 feet.

For the bus, it’s switchbacks all the way down. And then switchbacks all the way back up. Over the course of the ride, the climate changes repeatedly, from cutting highland chill to tropical heat to cooler but steamier cloud forest. The best part: It’s one-lane all the way, even though the road has two-way traffic. At times, the road is so narrow, it looks like a mirage. And naturally, there’s nothing in the way of barriers between the edge of the barreling bus and the precipice below. It is all kinds of freaky-gorgeous.

More pix and video after the jump.

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Photo Diary: Peru the Surreal, northern highlands edition.

Yesterday’s itinerary:

  • Soaked in the same hot springs where Atahualpa once bathed.
  • Sampled a local flavor of ice cream called Cajamarca Sky. (Which lies somewhere on the flavor continuum between FDC Blue No. 1 and pure sugar.)
  • Watched the clusterfuck of plastic surgery known as The Expendables while sitting amid a gaggle of teens who chuckled ‘si si si’ every time someone got blown up.
  • Joined a procession for one of Peru’s most venerated Christ figures.
  • Ended the night at a small peña, drinking chilcanos and belting out Peruvian waltzes under an omnipresent poster of Che until two in the morning.

All photos by C-M.