Walking through the park on a warm summer evening, kids playing on swings and climbing structures, parents socializing, and teenagers sneaking kisses on benches, it’s clear that Peruvians are interested in having fun. And it’s not even the weekend yet.
Cafes, restaurants, theaters, and night clubs line the park boundaries in Miraflores, the upscale tourist district in Lima. An almost full moon hangs just above the Cathedral, and the sounds of a choir echo from the entrance. A double decker tour bus, parked in front, is just leaving for the 7pm City at Night run.
We find our way to pizza street, a moniker denoting a collection of restaurants satisfying a very western crowd’s comfort needs. Ours advertizes Peruvian food, and we order seafood plates with too little shrimp and whitefish, and too many potatoes and french fries. But the local beer is great, and we watch Australian Open tennis highlights and Barcelona soccer on the surrounding big screens, while pan flutes and guitars serenade our ears.
Our first night in the capital goes well, and we’re very glad to be able to enjoy a slow pace in a friendly neighborhood. If the tour which begins tomorrow is similar to others from Adventures Abroad, it’ll not be a vacation, but a well-designed educational immersion, leaving little time for rest.