April 14, 2010

Barranco, or On the Road with The Archaeologist and Half-O

Apparently I am drawn to ambiguous plagerisms for my post titles.

Barranco is Lima's bohemian neighborbood. It's where the artists and musicians live ...and surfers (...and people who are ostensibly artists, musicians, and/or surfers, but really they just smoke lots of marijuana).

The Architecture

The architecture is very different from other Lima neighborhoods I've seen. You can see the residual gentrification of the late 19th and early 20th Centuries when it became a seaside resort for the wealthy. There are colonial and republican style facades all over, lots of parks, and a left-over street car track.

The bridge is called Puente de los Suspiros, or Bridge of Sighs. As the story goes, the daughter of one of the rich aristocrats that lived up by the bridge fell in love with a street sweeper she saw down below. Her father forbade the marriage, so she lived out her life looking out her window hoping to see her beloved. People crossing over the bridge could hear her sad sighs, and thus the name.

We thought this was a cool shot juxtaposing the post-renovation and currently-being-renovated parts of the cathedral. And thanks to The Archaeologist, I can tell you that the roof in back is wattle and daub. He also informed me that the banner in the foreground is announcing a Carrot Plan at 3am.

The Ocean

It was awesome to see the ocean again - salted air is refreshing.

Barranco has some good surf spots, but we didn't see anyone out. Later, though, we saw this guy heading down.


These are the steps we took down to the restaurant and the view from the restaurant.

One of the downsides of Barranco is that it's a tourist stop, so there are more gringos around, and tours, and people catering to tourists. So, we got treated like tourists - but perhaps part of that was the totally tourista lunch I ordered. I decided to get some ceviche - a Peruvian specialty - and try chicha morada per Damaris' suggestion. So yeah, it was all "Peruvian Experience" but really, I like seafood but never make it at home, and I was going to try chicha morada sooner or later, so why not sooner. Anyway, the cevivhe was very good, as were their fries - I'm loving aji on my fries. Chicha morada was ok. There was an unidentified undercurrent to it that I couldn't place - beets? blood? It was off-puttingly just beyond my grasp. Later that night we had soy sauce (or as Half-O calls it, salty sauce) with dinner and I sensed the undercurrent again. Aha - fermentation. Now that I know, perhaps I'll give it another try.

We didn't have time to see the contemporary or colonial art museums, or stay for any music, so we'll be back.


Chris M said...

I feel bad when there are no comments. We love Sloanie. And you. And Zach.

Seymour Chase said...

you are too kind!