Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Day 189: Dave's email account of Sunday's adventures

The gutting of a guinea pig by Betty...

"i set out for huaraz, peru, a town at around 3000 and some odd meters, which is more than 12,000 feet. i planned to do some hiking and relaxing here, but who needs plans?so my first day in huaraz i happen to mosey into a coffee shop that i heard was good, and run by a nice america guy. i wander in to look at the book shelves, its a thursday, and the american guy says to me, you wouldnt be interested in playing some ultimate frisbee tomorrow, would you? and
i was like, are you kidding? i love ultimate frisbee. so he says great, we have a game tomorrow at 11. so i say great, im in. so the next day i put off whatever plans i might have had a grab a taxi with all the other frisbee players to a beautiful playing field up in a small village outside of town. there were a lot of peace corp volunteers there, which are all american, so it looked like it was going to be interesting and fun. and if youve never seen peruvians playing frisbee, thats really fun too. so i was standing around before the game, talking to a nice jewish boy from maryland, when another female peace corp volunteer walked up to us, looked at me and said, dave? and i looked at her and said grace? low and behold, i had run into grace obuchowitz from west springfield high school, one class ahead of me but we shared mutual friends. so we caught up, she is in the peace corp in a small town outside of huaraz, and shed been here for about a year and a half. pretty crazy eh? coincideces are pretty wild.
so that night i went out for a lot of drinks and some dancing with the peace corp volunteers as they destressed over shots of tequila and american music.i guess i behaved myself because i was invited by the original nice jewish boy from greenbelt, ben and his wife libby, to attend a local baptism, where they would become the padrinos, or g-dparents, to some local tradition. the padrino thing is kinda common among peace corp volunteers. so you know me, i couldnt pass up that opportunity. and the other opportunity that arose was that at the baptism, for celebration, the family was going to serve the peruvian mountain delicacy, cuy, or guinea pig in english. por cuy, ¿por que no? or, for guinea pig, why not? so grace and i were invited into the traditional peruvian mountain house, made out of adobe bricks and usually a dirt floor, on a nice sunday afternoon and i did it. i ate half a guinea pig, im sorry ellen, i wanted to remember the name of the guinea pigs we had as kids but i couldnt. i wouldve said a prayer or something. i even ate some of the bones, thats what they do. it was pretty good, it did kinda taste like chicken but it was really good. im not
sure if this gets me kicked out of the vegetarian club or not, but well see.post
guinea pig feast i spent the night in libby and bens, quasi apartment, though quite homey, and we had a good ole time speaking in english and reading aloud to each other. the next day i did a tour of some of the other tiny tiny villages with grace and i got to see some other peace corp sites. we ended up, at graces host family´s house, who are super nice people, super hospitable, and have little guinea pigs running all over the place. it kind of made me hungry, jk, mom, jk.so that leads us up to the sort of present time of whenever you all will read this email, i guess im already in the past, but you can live literatureally whenever you want, past present or future."