In just a few whirlwind days, my time with Run by Rural comes to a close, and I’m on my way to a flight to greet my family in Lima. My last memory of Lima is exiting the airport from the International Arrivals and sweating in the hot muggy climate while dragging my suitcase to the Domestic Terminal as taxi drivers surround me ask if I need transportation. I wasn’t really pleased with the circumstances, which is why I’m curious to explore what exists beyond the Jorge Chavez International Airport. Although appearing to be the same as any other international city, Lima bursts with culinary delight among undertones of history. My family and I follow our tour to the edge of shoreline in Miraflores to the city’s Plaza de Armas and we uncover more than delicious sandwiches of La Lucha Sanguacheria as the struggle for South America’s independence becomes more apparent in the city of Lima.
Our tour begins with a visit to Parque del Amor, set on the edge of Miraflores. In the center lies Victor Delfin’s statue “The Kiss,” a large red-orange sculpture of two lovers passionately embracing–I’m certain it’s the perfect Lima makeout place during sunset. Our next stop takes us to the core of Lima’s fight for independence, a revolution begun after America’s “Shot Heard Round the World” shook the earth and spread the desire for self-governance. In the Plaza de Armas among the Palacio del Gobierno and Catedral de Lima my dad retells the story of San Martin and Bolivar’s campaign through South America and Latin America to liberate the continent from Spanish rule. This is only the beginning of resentment towards the Spanish conquistadors, since paintings throughout Cusco depict Spaniards as cruel and manipulative.
The final stop of our tour brings us to Monasterio de San Francisco where we climb through catacombs underneath the floors of the monastery. A claustrophobic’s nightmare, the catacombs create more apprehension as piles and intricate arrangements of bones and skulls line the pathway. As we’re told of procedures for processions to exit the home and carry the body to the church, we can’t help but think of exiting my Gung Gung’s home to arrive at his funeral with my uncle, the only son, and his family leading our procession. Hearing Mass proceed, I become just as curious about the spectacle above us as I am with the bones among us. My mom, the knowledgeable nurse, carefully identifies each curve of the bones knowing its correct name and how it harmoniously fits within the other body’s organs. Harmony exists beyond the backbone of the remains left here, however, it exists within the fusion of Catholicism and ancient Incan beliefs. Rather than abandon their beliefs for devout Spanish Catholicism, the mestizas and mestizos of mixed indigenous Incan and Spanish decent blended their religions as they did their backgrounds. Lima is only the beginning of this intricate relationship of Incan and Spanish.
This post is a part of Weekend Wanderlust hosted by A Brit and A Southerner, A Southern Gypsy, Casual Travelers, Justin Plus Lauren, Outbound Adventurer, City Tripping hosted by Wander Mum and Mummy Travels, Fly Away Friday hosted by Life in Wanderlust and Time Travel Blonde, and Weekend Travel Inspiration hosted by Reflections Enroute, The Crowded Planet, Contented Traveller, Albom Adventures, Safari 254, Families Go!, and Malaysian Meanders.
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