Saturday, 15 June 2013

Up in the air

Day 16 - 14 de Junio: Peru

Woke up today with no hangover - great success! At around 8am, I made my way over to the Puerto Maldonado hotel's breakfast area. I was surprised to see such an amazing spread! Up until now, we had been given yogurt, grains and dry bread for breakfast with scrambled eggs if we were lucky. Here, we were treated with all sorts of breakfast pastries, fresh bread, "normal" fruit, fried eggs and even knock-off brand oreos! It definitely started the day off right. It started to hit me that this was the last time I would pack my things on this contiki tour; i was ready for this goodbye, but it would be a bit hard after meeting so many amazing people. After packing, i wrote out little slips of paper with my name, email and blog address for all my tour mates in case they wanted to see how I was doing. If any of you are reading this, I hope you all make it safe to your destinations and have a good time in the rest of your travels! After filling out the contiki evaluations, we jumped on the bus and listened to our group's day song one last time on the way to the airport. When we arrived, the place looked deserted - apparently only a handful of flights leave this airport a day. Our tour group sort of got used to running behind schedule so it was odd to have arrived so early. We waited patiently for boarding. I talked to a couple of the Austrailians that joined our tour in Cusco (these were the ones that stole my place for the youngest person on the coach, lol). Being a flying day, the meat of the day didn't offer much for blog-worthy stories so i'll skip ahead to landing in Lima. It was about 4:30 and I was the only one who decided to hang out at the airport for my flight (i've planned out my cash pretty good and only really had enough for an airport dinner tonight). So at the airport exit, i gave everyone a handshake or hug and said a final goodbye. I checked in my bag next (fingers crossed it comes with me) and made my way to starbucks where i passed most of the next few hours talking with family back home with my wifi phone. This app "fongo" has worked amazing for free calls and I highly recommend it to any Vancouver traveller. I talked to several people, honourable mention going to Andrea Jordan (there, now you're famous like you wanted - watch out for the paparazzi). After a fair bit, i ran into two of my contiki friends that came back for their midnight flights. I wandered the shops with them, dipped into one last bit of wifi, then we made our way through the airport security. I figured security would be a bit more legit for international flights (in puerto maldonado, i walked through the body scanner with a half-consumed bottle of gatorade in my hand and was allowed through). All was good until we got to immigration and my heart dropped. I had just realized that the guy at check in had kept my immigration form. Luckily, it was only a $7 mistake, but I was still a little choked at the guy. As long as my bags arrive, i'll forgive him. As the time passed, I had to say farewell to one friend, then the other and now, here I am alone, writing at my gate. In just a handful of minutes, I walk onto a plane that will take me to a brand new adventure - and I can't wait to tell you all about it!

Waiting together at the airport with Saira from New York (middle) and Corinne from North Vancouver (right). We're all fairly tired.

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