While in Peru last December, I took a few snapshots of the city and wrote some words about my experience below.
I spent most of my time in Lima wandering around the Barranco District, a small Bohemian District that borders on the ocean. I stayed with friends in Chorrillos and have walked along the coast quite a bit, went to Mira Flores, Huaca Pucllana and Downtown Lima.
A few of the locals that I had spoken with described this decay as representing an overall ¨lack of respect¨ for their city and have expressed an embarrassment of the current state. One woman explained to me that she finds it very frustrating to be in a place with such beautiful historical architecture but with a lack of upkeep. I can understand this for sure. As a visitor, I was able to experience it in a more novel way. I found this decay to be so beautiful and told a very authentic story to me. There is something so beautiful about seeing an ornate Spanish Church, partially destroyed in an earthquake, with vultures on the top. You can see the way it´s been constructed and it sort of looks like match sticks. There´s something honest and real about it. It shows a sense of time and history, more so to me than a perfectly preserved building can.
Barranco to me feels like a mash-up of the old and the new. I’ve heard stories about the different cycles it has endured – with people moving in and out and some talk about gentrification, but as a visitor to the area, it is undeniably so beautiful. The colours and textures are unreal. The iron fences and swirly curly cues and colonial architecture looks so beautiful against the Lima sun. It is picturesque. Barranco is like my home for a very short time in Lima. I hope these vignettes inspire me for a long time. I am so grateful for this experience and for the wonderfully hospitable and kind people I´ve met along the way.
I also stumbled upon some pre-incan ruins in Mira Flores. There really are ruins everywhere and it’s so unique to experience such rich history in the middle of the city.