Friday, April 6, 2007
I went out to find some food and ended up walking a similar path as yesterday except in reverse. I started off a bit farther north than I had before and ran into a really neat skate and bike part that was packed with kids. Overall the coast was really busy today as it was a public holiday and the weather was fantastic, about 75 degrees with a cool breeze.
Of course I also ran into the parasailers again, and after watching them go around for a while I think I'll have to renig my earlier statement and say that I most definitely DO want to go for a ride, even if it's a dual tandem. It's really cool as a spectator too because they are often actually below you and no more than 20 feet away. They just float by weightlessly.
I had two unexpected interactions with locals today. While watching the waves come in a woman walked up and asked me the time in English. How dare she assume I'm american!? Actually I looked especially American today with my dual striped t-shirt on, so I was easy prey. I gave her the time (I should say "Je ne parles pas Anglais" next time) and she then began chatting me up about this and that. Apparently I'm beautiful because I'm over 2 meters. Hrmmm. Anyways, she was trying to sell me something, either the tour guiding she claims on her card or something less reputable. I eventually clawed myself away.
The other was much more geniune, cuter and proof that language is no real boundary. I was stocking up on my strawberry gogurt (mmmm, strawberry gogurt) and walking down an aisle when an old lady called out. I turned around and she pointed at the top shelf and said something or another I didn't understand. But the message was clear. Yet again, my incredible height could help less fortunate folk, for once more I was "Top Shelf Man"! Uhmm.. ya, well anyways, I got what she asked for, she thanked me (I understood that) and I said no problem. See? I'll have this Spanish thing licked in no time.
Speaking of learning Spanish, I decided to ask the doormanm, Jose Luis, how much a taxi to central Lima should cost. Per the usual drill I spent all day practicing the phrase and upon returning belted it out on him. He understood and this time since the answer was numbers I mostly understood the answer too. More importantly we got to chatting about various things in his broken English and my more than broken Spanish with the help of my dictionnary.
Fascinating things he related to me:
1) France is #1 country in world for food, Peru is #2
2) The French hate the Americans, the Americans make fun of the French
3) The French have more culture and intellect, the Americans just have money
4) Wong, that shop I got my phone at, is like Costo, you can return things no questions asked. It's Chinese.
5) There are lots of Chinese Peruvian folks in Peru, and Chifa, what they call the Peruvian Chinese food is very popular and extra yummy according to him.
6) He's never been to Machu Picchu because he can't afford it, and asked whether Americans knew of the Incas
Anyways, I think I found someone to torture a bit every day with my Francospanglish, his job is just hanging out and he seems to enjoy the excercise.