The Unknown: Random Reflections on Peru

This past July, I had the opportunity to travel to Peru to reunite with the lovely lady that I am dating.  She had been studying abroad in Lima for the spring semester and it had been an extremely long time without seeing her.  Although I learned a lot in the time we were apart, there was nothing more relieving and freeing than that moment when I finally saw her in the Lima airport.  Our journey throughout Peru was an incredible adventure.  We traveled to three different regions of the country and were able to observe the majesty of our earth and of God.  We were able to be together 24/7 after being apart from each other for six months.  It was one hell of an adventure.

The lovely lady and I had traveled to three different regions of Peru.  We visited the cities of Lima, Arequipa and Cusco.  In Cusco, we were able to go to Aguas Calientes and Ollantaytombo as well.  For Cusco, Aguas Calientes and Ollantaytombo, the lovely lady had traveled there multiple times.  I am very grateful for her bringing me to these places because I was able to see the sights where she had told me stories of beforehand.

I name the title of this piece The Unknown because I feel like it appropriately describes the attitude of traveling we had.  We didn’t know what our next destination was until last minute.  We didn’t always know what we would see, who we would meet or where we would stay for the night.  Furthermore, we had no idea what we would learn about each other or how we would grow as a couple for being together for two and a half weeks for twenty four-seven.  We didn’t really know what it would be like to finally be reunited after being apart for six months.  The spontaneous attitude that we traveled with applied to both the logistical and relational aspects of the trip.  Because of our spontaneity, we had a lot of experiences that were very new and exciting to us.

I am obviously not going to blog about every detail of our trip in Peru.  I do not want to share too much about my time there because I am seeking to not consume the environment I interacted with.  As I have stated in other posts, I think that social media has been abused as a tool for people to share every detail of their travels.  Social media can cause a person to feel as if they need to share every detail of their trip in order to feel socially accepted.  As a result, they end up consuming their environment as a product instead of seeing it as a magnificent space that isn’t able to fit in the parameters of a picture or tweet.   That being said, I will choose to not share some details of the trip because I don’t want to consume those environments.  I want to promote a general attitude of sensitivity towards Peru.  I want to recognize that traveling to Peru as a white straight American male is a very privileged identity to have while traveling.  Due to my privilege, I have the potential to venture on a short trip to Peru, consume my environment and leave the country with never really appreciating those places.  In my future blogs about Peru, I want to show that I didn’t consume my environment and that I truly appreciated what I experienced.  I want to elevate the beauty of the people and land of Peru instead of elevating my status as a privileged traveler.  I am extremely appreciative to my traveling companion who educated me a lot about Peru and how I should act so that I was able to be respectful of the customs.  The lovely lady and the cohort of American students that she traveled to Lima with know a lot more about Peru and have a greater grasp on how to travel to the country as Americans.  I am looking forward to spending time with them to hear about their reflections of their experiences.

To view my photography about my time in Peru: Photos: The Glory of the Andes and Photos: Walls of Opportunity

To read about a story I told about my time in Peru: A World of White Pt. 1: The Tour


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