My first impression of Lima was not that good. I don’t know if it’s smog, but you can definitely feel a difference in air quality. The taxi ride from the airport reminded me that many countries don’t follow North American driving habits. A marked two-lane road quickly turns into three or four lanes, if the vehicle is small enough to squeeze through. Honking repeatedly is the driver’s way of indicating that they’re attempting to squeeze through, or that they don’t think the person squeezing through will make it.
Right after I checked into the hotel, I decided to go for a walk. Having just spent fifteen hours on the plane, I wanted to get my legs moving. The hotel I’m staying at is a fair distance away from Central Lima (Lima’s core), but it’s a nice walk.
I left the hotel feeling quite guarded and hesitant to take my camera out. This may have something to do with my a friend of mine telling me that muggings were prevalent in Lima. I relaxed a bit as the day went on, visited a few old colonial buildings and even took my camera out a few times. The overcast weather wasn’t best for photos, but at least it’s not raining!
I’ve found communication to be a bit of a challenge. Not many people speak English and unfortunately I have not retained much of my High School Spanish class.
Tomorrow I may do more walking around Lima or I may try to find a way to Pachacamac, some ruins about 30 km south of Lima.