Friday, May 27, 2005

there's a barbarian in the back of my car

Even though there is a sort of baseline ulceration that brews for a good month before a big trip, it's a phase where I worry and talk a lot about all my plans but don't actually do anything. As a result, imminent myocardial infarction from last-minute blood-pressure skyrocketing looms as a possible gift over the next few days. The hard drive having its meltdown didn't help any.

Since I'm leaving in less than five days now, it's probably safe now to list out the finalized itinerary of my ill-planned disaster adventure:
    Day 1: arrive in Lima at a ridiculously late hour in the dead of the night. Attempt not to get killed on the streets of Lima, while travelling to a hostel with large sums of money so that domestic airline tickets can be purchased.
    Day 2: wake up at a ridiculously early hour, catch the first flight out to Arequipa. Arrive in Arequipa, situate in hostel #2. Make arrangements to see Andean condors, which requires a 2-day tour through the Colca Canyons.
    Day 3: start Colca Canyon tour, which stops in Chivay for the evening.
    Day 4: sunrise at a mirador at Cruz del Condor. Respect the wingspan. Return to Arequipa, where a 6'4", 29-year old triathlete will have faced his personal fears and arrived to meet me, all by his lonesome. Seriously, if you're 29 years old and complain about "being scared" to travel by yourself, I have no patience for you. You're lucky I'm even allowing you to accompany me, actually.
    Day 5: hang out in Arequipa, the white city.
    Day 6: fly out to Cusco, pass out from the high altitude.
    Day 7-9: watch as my other travel companion works out her demons about sharing a private bathroom with two other people. Check out Cusco.
    Day 10: begin Inca trail trek, i.e. farewell, cruel world.
    Day 11: begin to wonder why I opted for a 4-day trek instead of the luxury train to Machu Pichu.
    Day 12: hallucinations begin, people hold me down to force Gu shots into me.
    Day 13: make it to Machu Pichu; stare in awe, cry, collapse to the ground, get airlifted out some time that night. Shower, perhaps repeatedly.
    Day 14: fly to Lima; explore a teeny, tiny portion of Lima, then fly out.
My blood pressure went up just chronicling all of this, especially when I remembered how small the bags are that I'm packing. This is quite a test of the low-maintenance/high-maintenance classification for women. Am I low-maintenance? Or do I just think I am? Stay tuned.

To add to all the fun, my friend P called yesterday and informed me that he is squatting in my apartment while I am away. Now, normally, I'd consider this mildly rude but equally amusing, and pass it off. But the problem is- the week leading up to a trip always involves something of a tornado sweeping through my place. I'm spending all of my time working, and gathering up things I need for my trip. Cleaning fell off of the list of things to do. Now, while P is a friend of mine, he's not in that inner circle. You know, that inner circle where I could leave my apartment looking like a disaster zone and he wouldn't report me to Health & Human Services. Yay- my weekend just got even more filled with tasks of great entertainment... vacuuming is so exciting!

Now, let me take a breath, and exhale a big, fat whatever. I know that after all this bitching and moaning, the trip to Peru is going to be awesome, I will love my fellow travel compadres, P will serve as the houseboy who checks my mail and cleans my bathroom while I'm gone (i.e. he will be my b*tch), and this weekend will unfold a waterfall. I can feel it. I just need to stop bugging!

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