Colca, condors and escaping Arequipa

8/08/19

Besides the company and condors, Colca Canyon was not worth the 2:30am wake up or going to Arequipa for… I had other reasons to be there but I’ll never recommend anyone to go to Arequipa in the future. The breakfast included in our tour was best described as a tasting… a whole tablespoon of scrambled huevos and bread so hard, I could’ve sold it as rocks to protesters. Not impressed… hungry people, are not happy people + sleep deprivation… it’s the stuff riots are started for. Post Colca, on the way home, I come down with a bad fever. Being a whinging sick child, I make Rick feel my temperature to confirm the further disintegration of my health… So annoying. Our final night together and I may not end up making it out. Fingers crossed the fever breaks.

Back at the hostel, we all go down for a nap. I hear back from Elvar, who I’d hoped to say a final goodbye to tonight as well… we’re in a 1km radius, but sadly, there will be no goodbye. The Scots encourage me to come out and see them regardless (whom I’d love to see), but at the moment, I’d prefer to be stoned to death by Arequipa’s mining protesters than see E, and be reminded of how little I meant to, “some guy on a tour”… Nah, good thanks. Was bad enough saying goodbye to Rick n Rudy without the other drama… coupled with being sick, I just don’t have the strength to hold my emotions together rn.

Final rooftop drinks, and in rolls Frank. Another bus cancellation meant he would be held hostage by the City for one more night.

We meet a New Zealand girl, Alex, who arrived at the hostel today… after hearing about how hard it is to get out of Arequipa, she’s keen to leave already too.

10/08/19

The boys are up early to head to the airport for Cusco. Saying goodbye to awesome people who you connect with instantly, like you’d been mates for years, is hard!!! Many people from the hostel asked how long Rick, Rudy and I had been travelling together for, assuming we were longtime friends, who’d known each other far longer than 4 days… Best bromance ever.

Perhaps I should remain more detached and distant from others… the strangely strong connections I’ve made on this trip are stirring an emotional, sentimental side of me I cringe at. Why do I value certain people, near strangers to this degree? Jesus, is it too early for a mojito or margarita, bc I’m spent.

Fed up, Frank and a couple of French girls go to the bus station and have it on good authority, buses will leave tonight. Alex and I jump on board this plan and book a bus ticket. With the Dutch bro’s gone, my cough/ chest infection in full force, I need to leave this city behind.

Ceviche, a 2 sole soft serve and a taxi ride later, Alex and I are at the bus station. I look up and there’s the old tour group… My stomach drops, looking away, I slink off silently into the crowd.

Hands down, meeting Rick, Rudy, Frank and Alex was the only good thing to have happened in Arequipa… and escaping Arequipa. Oh wait, I got 2 new hats and had a pretty good McFlurry there… yep, that is all. Bit disappointed I didn’t get anything more than unwanted advances by Jorge and a weird rejection thrown at me while in Arequipa (considering the riots n strikes… I mean… throw a girl a stone or 2)… Here’s to better luck in the future.

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