Peru Update #9 — The (adventurous) Home Stretch!

Final - DunesOur group has safely returned to home soil.  Here is the final installment of their story.

Terry writes:

Final - HuacachinaIf you’re looking for Huacachina on a map, you’re out of luck.  This tiny desert settlement is literally a four-block oasis situated between two massive sand dunes.  The whole thing is just a five-minute taxi ride away from the city of Ica.  Here, the main attraction is the very landscape itself: giant mounds of sand… perfect for sand boarding.  So naturally, that’s what we did.  The eleven of us piled into a giant motorized rolling cage known as a dune buggy, and set off.  It’s no exaggeration to say that it was some of the most fun I’ve ever had.  After what amounted to a sort of roller coaster ride, we stopped and pulled out sand boards to test our skills.  Final - SandboardingThere was quite a mixture of successes and falls in our group, but everyone had fun.  The last hill of the trip was so steep that we all had to belly-slide down.  On the ride back, our driver took us over a few major drop offs, which made our hearts jump!  We returned covered head to toe with sand.

The next day we got up early to drive out to the ocean.  This last adventure brought us offshore in a little boat to Islas Ballestas:  islands covered with penguins, other birds, and — what was once Peru’s biggest export — their poop.  To be able to see so many different species of wildlife in one place was amazing.  In addition to the birds, there were beaches covered with sea lions.  These rocky outcrops were once part of a coastal mountain range, but are now no more than a series of caves and beaches, offering a perfect place to shift gears and prepare for our return home.

Final - BeachIn the final days of our trip, I began to feel an overwhelming sense of appreciation, and to ponder thousands of thoughts about life.  I contemplated what it would be like if I were born and raised in Peru: who would I be?  However, the thing that really got me is when I started thinking about how narrow-minded and unappreciative I am.  I realized the need to make a change, to start to honor what I have been given that others have never experienced.  Final - PenguinsWe put so much value on our pricey possessions, TV’s, phones… even our electricity.  When in Peru, the power went out several times and each time, I barely felt a difference in the way everything operated.  The people there were as happy as anyone I know here, and they seemed to have a much greater awareness of what actually brought them happiness. 

That was just part of my experience of Peru. I’m sure all of us had different ways of seeing it.  However, I do know that we all came to certain conclusions: to be grateful and appreciative for everything we have, for the people we care about, the clothes on our backs and for every day we get to live in this giant, dynamic, diverse, wonderful world.Final - Arch

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2 Comments on “Peru Update #9 — The (adventurous) Home Stretch!”

  1. laladyhart Says:

    Terry’s a terrific writer.

  2. Allison Roberts Says:

    Thank you Terry for sharing this heart-felt memory of your trip. I really appreciated sharing in your experience in this way.
    Allison Roberts

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