Off to Juliaca

26 Nov

Tonight I am in Juliaca (Puno, actually) preparing to speak at the Google Business Group tomorrow. Some developers from the group came to pick me up in Arequipa and I rode with them the 3-4 hours. The drive was surprisingly pretty, if quite desolate, and it was fun to see Misti and Chachani from the other side. We stopped at two “rest areas,” the latter guarded by a rondero (somewhat like a sheriff) with a shotgun. The ronderos once served to combat terrorism but are now primarily concerned with livestock theft in this area. The road, much of which is above 14,000 ft (!), is the finest I have seen in Peru! Amazing. Wide shoulders, not crowded, and nary a pothole. We were above 13,000 ft before I even realized it. Thankfully, I have had no ill effects from the altitude. Losing weight and living at 7,500 ft has me in much better shape than the last time I spent a night above 12,000 ft (also not having had to get there on my own two legs with 35 lbs of sleeping gear).

We (myself and other conference speakers) are staying tonight in Puno even though the conference is in Juliaca because there were protests in Puno today and they are going to Juliaca tomorrow. The protesters threw a lot of big rocks on the highway connecting the two cities, so we had some slow spots on the way over, but I’m really thankful for the concern of my hosts. Evidently, the protests may cause water or electricity shortages tomorrow and it wouldn’t have been nice to wake up to that. Also this gives us time to visit the largest lake in South America (Titicaca) in the morning. We should be able to do a couple laps around it before the conference….

We had dinner at a great pizza place (one of many) in Puno. The wood-fired oven warms the whole restaurant, which is perhaps why pizza seems to be so popular at this frigid elevation (12,500 ft). Also it’s a tourist town and we know what tourists eat. The pizza was superb.

I’m off to bed after I find a place to plug in my laptop….

 

3 Responses to “Off to Juliaca”

  1. Dawn November 27, 2013 at 12:16 pm #

    So glad you found good pizza! That is a bonus! :). Hope your speaking engagement goes well.

  2. michael CHANDLER November 27, 2013 at 2:04 pm #

    Could we borrow a few of the ronderos to patrol our southern border? We had wood fired ovens in Turkey. Bread there was superb. Enjoy the “high” life!

    Love, Dad

    • chuck buchanan December 9, 2013 at 12:02 pm #

      Great hearing from you Dave! Our family always enjoys your updates. The Lord continues to be faithful in honoring your commitment to his Kingdom. He will not fail you. Hope ya’ll are planning an awesome Christmas there in Peru.

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