Friday, March 12, 2010

Farewell, Cusco. Good Morning, Arequipa.

We arrived in Arequipa at 6:30AM this morning after an incredible overnight bus ride. We heeded our own advice, and splurged on the 60 soles ($20) Flores luxury bus with enormous black leather seats, overhead lights, free dinner (some little bits of beef and onions with rice and a gooey, gelatinous pineapple desert), and a movie, (Attila the Hun... special), in English. When the bus pulled into the Arequipa bus terminal, we were so comfy that we didn't want to de-board! Prior to our trip, we were advised by a friend to purchase some Xanex to ease the pain of bus travel. We wrote the name Diazepam (the Peruvian version of Xanex), on a piece of paper, and, at a local pharmacy, the following conversation ensued:

Rives: (handing over the piece of paper) I need Diazepam, please.
Pharmacist: No. Need prescription for that.
Rives: My doctor says that I need it for my fear of flight.
Pharmacist: Need prescription.
Rives: He said that I didn't.
Pharmacist: Yes, you do... OK, I only give you ten pills. Generic is alright?
Rives: Yes, thank you. How much?
Pharmacist: Ten Soles ($3.33)

We really, really miss Cusco. There were moments when we considered ditching the Buenos Aires plan altogether and settling there instead. Every day we found another excuse to extend our stay. (ex: We could go whitewater rafting tomorrow! Velandia y La Tigra is playing tomorrow night! We need to eat a few more meals at Granja Heidi!) But we did it. We finally tore ourselves away from Cusco's divine clutches, and we're ready to take on Arequipa!

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