Carrie-Anne and I are on the first leg of a Great Cities Mission tour of churches in Peru, Bolivia, and Chile with John Todd and Kami, Craig and Donna, and GCM executive director Kelley Grant. There’s no time to be eloquent or overly reflective at this moment. I’m just hammering out a quick post this morning before the worship assembly here in Cusco just to let everybody know we’ve arrived safely and are having an absolute blast.
We arrived at the international airport in Lima at about 1:00 am Saturday morning and had to wait there for our flight to Cusco until 5:30. So far, that’s been the toughest part of the trip. Well, that, and the fact that the altitude sickness medication we’re all on, Diamox, makes Dr Pepper and any carbonated beverage taste like battery acid. Old battery acid. It’s disgusting. That’s a side effect nobody told us about. And it’s killing me. I haven’t had a DDP — none of us has — since Friday morning. Is that the reason for my headache, or is it because we’re at 12,000 feet?
Yesterday, we toured several magnificent cathedrals from the 17th and 18th centuries and then met the missionary / church plant team that’s been here a little over three years. We ate at a really nice restaurant and, yes, guinea pig was on the menu. Last night may have been my shot to try this traditional Peruvian dish. Guinea pig?!? Yeah, I know. We’ve been joking about it for three months. And here it was. I wanted to. I really wanted to. The picture on the menu really didn’t help. And Barton comparing the taste and texture to that of squirrel or rabbit didn’t help either. So, I chickened out. Officially, I changed my mind for, perhaps, another opportunity today or tomorrow. But, really, I think I may have chickened out. I opted instead, to stay with the local taste and be somewhat daring, for the alpaca steak. It’s not really llama… Well, yeah, it really is. I ate a llama steak last night. And it was good.
We’re worshiping with the Cusco Church this morning. And I’m very excited about that. I love worshiping with God’s people in far flung parts of this earth. There will be time for eloquence and reflection on that later.
Sounds like a wonderful trip, looking forward to hearing more about it. Llama steak sounds yummy! Philip would have totally ordered the guinea pig 🙂
Is eating guinea pig like eating your hamster? Yuck.
To an American, I think it’s more like eating somebody else’s hamster.
They are not raised as pets here. They are raised for food, traditionally by and for the extreme poor. I believe it’s only been recently, maybe in the past 20-30 years, that it’s become somewhat of a specialty or novelty food item. Probably because of the “gross” factor expressed by most “gringos.”
I have totally chickened out. I’m not going to do it. One, it’s always the most expensive thing on the menu. And, two, I’ve listened to too many Peruvians and Bolivians talk about how nasty it is and how awful it tastes. I’m out. It’s not going to happen.