August 6, 2012
Here I go bragging about how easy the trip is, and we’ve already got our first amorphus, cryptic delay. They’re checking the plane for something technical. An hour after the originally scheduled take-off, we should have info about a new take-off time.
This is the only daily non-stop flight to Lima from LAX.
For my part, the delay doesn’t mean much. Maybe they’ll send us home and I fly tomorrow. It would be lousy to get routed through Miami… I was really looking forward to starting at the university tomorrow with a full tank of sleep. So far, these delays are just an opportunity to practice my spanish. I listen carefully to the first announcement, try to translate it, and get the english version right after! Fun!
Its rough, though, for people who have connections, or have come a long way to be here. The terminal is packed now. many people are lining the isles because they were standing, anticipating boarding. The clerk actually announced that we would board in ten minutes then… Well I’d rather have a delay than a technical problem in the air.
July and August are the hight of tourist season in the Andes. Next to me are some russians with bags from Hawaii and big packs of outdoor gear for the ruins ahead. Many of the tourists here are headed to Machu Pichu. Most people who ask about my trip assume that’s where I’m going. A dear family friend who led university trips through the region for decades could not BELIEVE that I would be in Peru two weeks with no archeological tourism plans.
Mostly, though, it seems like people here have been visiting the states and are returning home. Families, young children, business men, stately older couples with carefully coiffed hair. They’re gathered around iphones or newspapers, stratified by decade. A healthy smattering of ipads. Actually, given the free internet and the electronic devices on hand – mine included – this is the least grumbling I’ve ever heard out of a room full of people delayed an hour At Least.
Dave, for his part, is always cool as a cucumber. He’s just relaxing into his New York Times like this is any Sunday morning over breakfast. I am a compulsive worrier. I rarely relax, but when I do, I feel guilty and assured there’s something I should be worried about. I’ve been trying to turn over a new leaf the past year or so, and it’s going well.
Another hour on the ground is just another hour to read. When I get on the rocks, everything will become finite, questions will be answered. Until then, I have time to imagine what we might see, and to create the questions themselves.