Coming to Peru in 2008 was one of the biggest “firsts” of my life. It was the first time I had moved to a developing country on my own and the entire experience has been string of firsts, even to this day. I guess that’s just the nature of living in a new, foreign, and unpredictable country!
- The first time I touched down in Peru, I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to communicate with anyone. Thankfully, my high school Spanish came back to me and I was speaking within the first week.
- The first place I stayed at in Peru was my friend’s relative’s apartment in Lima that was filled with art and culture. I still feel that it was a perfect introduction to the country.
- The first time I “watched a movie” in Peru, it was in a cabina: a little room with two beach chairs and an old TV. They put the movie in a DVD player. Huancayo has since graduated to a movie theater.
- The first week I was in Peru, I went to a huge celebration typical of the Andes with hundreds of people packed shoulder-to-shoulder in two plazas passing beer around and dancing to groups of orchestras. I still have a scar from a castillon (pyrotechnic tower) spark that burned a hole through my shirt.
- The first Peru blogger I ever met in person was Karen from Karencita de Peru. She has since moved back to Vancouver where I’m also originally from, so it’s easy to stay in touch.
- The first pet I ever owned on my own was a cat and I became addicted. Roy and I ended up welcoming a second cat into our home, not knowing that there could be territorial issues. Thankfully, they ended up loving each other on their own.
- The first time I met the president of Peru, Ollanta Humala, he shook my hand. It was during an earthquake drill at the main plaza in front of the government place in Lima.
- The first time I was ever hospitalized was this past November when they found gallstones in my gall bladder. After all my concerns about my health in Peru, the most serious issue turned out to be a condition that probably has nothing to do with Peru at all. I’m currently waiting for surgery to get my gall bladder removed and I’m scheduled in for March, much earlier than I expected!