I had to fly to LA then it was an 8 hour flight to Lima. I researched in depth (ONLINE) to find the perfect apartment for us to stay while in Lima. I found an awesome, clean, and comfortable apartment in Miraflores that was really close to everything (except, y'know, where wedding was - but that's a whole other story). It had a full kitchen so I could cook without worrying about spending too much money or getting food poisoning. Despite my amazing kitchen amenities I ended up surviving off bread and cheese and bottled water the whole time. Being pregnant while traveling isn't the best, I have decided. Everyone says that the food in Peru is so delicious but it made me want to gag on sight. I blamed it on pregnancy, not on pickiness or fear of food-borne illness, when explaining to the locals.
The original plan was for us to stay in Lima for the whole week but plans changed and my darling companion ended up getting married in Bagua. We took advantage of the time that we had in Lima to visit some neat places. First we went to this ancient temple. It was built around 200 A.D.
|view from the top of the temple (I feel like a false Moroni)|
|Workers still uncovering the other half of the temple. It's crazy that they are still mysterious pieces of history to discover. The internet makes everything seem like old news but there are still lots of things to find out.|
|A break from walking to eat our Nutella sandwiches|
|There were dozens of para-gliders going on rides off the cliff near the park.|
|Maria LOVES sweets! I swear if she had it her way she would live off chocolate and cookies.|
|I brought my wedding dress for her to have, but what she didn't tell me was that her fiance had already purchased her one! So we took some pictures with my wedding dress and then for the wedding she used hers.|
|This is at Larcomar. It is a mall, with similar stores to the US, but it is cool because it is right on the cliffs . That is the only cool thing about it.|
|These stairs were sooo daunting! It doesn't look like it in the picture but there are a billion steps and I'm sure they were covered in glue since it was such a pain to go up them. Especially after walking for a couple miles.|
|I needed a break|
I got pretty nauseous but I never threw up! Yay! Juve's brother Rojellio was also travelling with us from Chiclayo to Bagua and Maria had told me that he was married. So I disregarded his lingering looks, his overt gestures of friendliness, and overly talkative ways. I passed it off as him being nice. Yeah... he wasn't married...more to come on that later. So the bus ride wasn't as bad as I thought it would be and I survived the trip without losing my recent meal of bread and cheese. Yay cheese!
|This was a beautiful green lagoon that we passed on our way|
Jesse told me to place him firmly in the "friend zone" by doing gross things like farting and belching in front of him. I had accidentally passed gas in front of him earlier (which I fully blame on pregnancy-there's just not enough room for toots and a fetus at the same time) but it didn't seem to have any effect and I didn't have the social grace to recover from any more public displays of my bodily functions.
|Morning of my birthday!|
|view outside from my hotel|
It was time to get ready for the wedding! We were on a tight schedule. There I was thinking that everything was going to go according to plan. LoL at me and my plans.
|In Bagua there aren't a lot of cars but everyone rides around in these buggy/motorcycles. They were everywhere! I want one.|
When we got to the reception hall the bishop informed me that I was to give a speech. Wonderful. Normally I would not think twice about it but when I am sick it's really hard for me to speak and understand English let alone Spanish!
|Rojelio and Juve|
The wedding finally got started at 9:30 PM. My bus was scheduled to leave at 10 PM. It was the last bus of the night so I couldn't push it back any longer. Usually the maid of honor would give her speech after the ceremony but because I had to leave "early" (which I previously and foolishly thought would be plenty of time if the wedding had started at 7) the bishop had me go first.
It was a bit awkward because the bishop gave me like a five minute introduction and was gushing about how I had come from so far and how I had sacrificed so much to be here for Maria. So after being sufficiently embarrassed by my introduction I gave a very short and (presumably) sweet speech and then they continued with the ceremony.
Okay, I can deal with this - I start gathering my things to get ready to go and Maria's mom comes over and gives me the biggest hug ever and starts crying! She is such a sweetheart. We both start crying as she tells me how grateful she was that I was able to come. So nice!
It's now 9:55 PM I'm like "Hey, The Creeper, we seriously need to leave." Two minutes later (9:57 PM for you mathletes) I'm really nervous! I like to think that I used to be more adventurous but I most definitely did not want to stay in that hotel one more night (despite the bathroom amenities). I wanted to get home or at least back to Miraflores where I was more comfortable.
Well, The Creeper was finally ready to go we tried to just quietly slip out the back. The ceremony was still going and I didn't want to interrupt but as I was leaving the bishop, in the middle of the ceremony, says "Oh look! The maid of honor is leaving! Everyone stand up and give her a round of applause!!!" There goes trying to be invisible. Ugh.
So after all of the warnings about the punctuality of the buses and the need to be at the station NO LATER than 10 PM I find that we didn't need to go to the bus station but we could go instead to a travel agency place and the bus would stop for us there. I was confused and very hesitant at this point; I would have rather just left five minutes earlier and gone to the bus station so I had more control of what was happening but that wasn't an option now so we went to the travel agency.
We arrived at 10:05PM and it was closed. I was a bundle of nerves. We asked around and everyone said that the bus hadn't come yet. Then at 10:10PM my heart lifted! The bus! It came! It stopped! And we got on! And it was the wrong bus. :( They wouldn't let us on. I was about to cry. I don't know when the last time was I prayed for something so hard over and over again as I did in that stupid bus to come. Okay - you may be thinking that I'm a huge whiner and such but I know I have a really good life if this is what I was praying hardest for. I prayed, maybe without a ton of hope or faith, but sure enough at 10:15 PM another bus came! It was late (Peru gets me again!! When will I learn?) and I couldn't have been more grateful!
It was supposed to be a nice bus (at least nicer than the others I had seen/ridden on) so it cost a bit more. It was a fancy two story bus and we got lucky and were on the top deck. Yeah, lucky...that's it. Also lucky, The Creeper was not assigned a seat next to me (he was across the aisle and one row ahead) but instead there was a man who took all my leg room and some of my seat as well. I then realized I should have prayed for the bus to come AND lots of leg room earlier. I'll remember for next time. It's not that I can't share or just mind my own business - I just don't like to touch strangers. It's not that I think that they are dirty or anything I just would rather have my own space. That was not a luxury I was not afforded on the bus ride.
Because we were on the top deck the bus seemed to sway a whole lot more than the one before and the bus driver was going super fast! It only took us 6 hours to get back to Chiclayo when it took us 8 hours to get to Bagua. There were so many twists and turns and dips and going throw river beds and I was feeling it.
Despite our seating arrangements, The Creeper hadn't let up and was still staring at me like I stare at a fresh piece of homemade bread with some Philadelphia cream cheese on it. Unfortunately, or fortunately I'm still not sure, I started getting really sick. I knew that my dinner was going to make another appearance soon, but I didn't pack any bags with me because I did just fine on the bus ride there. So I tapped The Creeper on the shoulder and I asked him if he could find me a bag because I was going to throw up. He quickly found me a bag and I proceeded to fill it. He was very gentlemanly he stood in front of me to block me so no one would see that I was throwing up. He handed me a tissue when I was finished and asked if he could take the bag full of vomit and dispose of it. I looked up at him and asked if he was joking. He wasn't so I handed it to him and watched him try to open the window to try to throw it out. The windows wouldn't open so he had to walk my half digested bread and cheese up to the front where there was a garbage. Lovely.
That pretty much did the trick. No more longing lingering looks. No more requests to sit and chat alone, in the dark. No more awkward questions. If I knew this trick when I was single I could have had a lot more free weekends! After the whole vomit incident I started to feel a good amount better but, I still couldn't sleep because every time we went through a dip I felt like I was falling and a would grab onto the seat in front of me. That was about every 10 minutes, so I was pretty exhausted after the trip. The Creeper and I parted ways quickly at the bus station in Chiclayo and I still have not received a friend request via facebook.
My flight to Lima wasn't for three more hours and the airport didn't even open for another hour. I just hung out in the bus station in Chiclayo passing the time. This lady sat down next to me and we started talking. The culture is so different over there. People we just start up conversations with whoever they are sitting next to. I found that refreshing a lot of times, but sometimes I just wanted to be left alone with my thoughts and not try to make small talk. This time it was really nice, the lady was really sweet and when it was time for me to leave she went and caught a cab for me and as I was getting into the cab she calls out, "now you give me a call as soon as you get to the airport!" then gives me a wink. I love how people over there have a concern for others. This lady didn't know me but she wanted the driver to know that someone was expecting me somewhere so hopefully nothing would happen to me. It was sweet.
I got to the airport just fine and I was happy that I made my flight to go back to Lima.
The sessions were very small and I was so grateful that I had time to go to the temple. The spirit was so sweet and peaceful. No matter where you go in the world, the feeling at the temple is the same. I'm so grateful that we have the restored gospel on the earth, that we have a place where all of the cares of the world just melt away.
My trip really wasn't how I imagined it would be, but going to the temple made it worth it.
I couldn't be happier to be home. The entire day after I got home I kept thinking "oh I missed you soft bed, I missed you clean water, I missed you soft clean carpet that I don't have to wear shoes with, oh and I missed you Calvin and Jesse too."