Author: Danielle Krautmann

Grizzly Bears in Lima

A Visit to the Zoo and Some Cultural Observations By  Danielle L. Krautmann Per suggestion of one of my lovely readers, last week I visited Parque de las Leyendas, a zoo in Lima.  A quick bus ride from my house and cheap admission, the trip was definitely worth it. But not because of the animals. I can’t say Parque de las Leyendas would be the first or even 8th place (I have a list) I would take a guest of mine when they visit Lima.  Having been lucky enough to visit many zoos in my lifetime, I’m a bit of a critic.  Baltimore and Denver are my favorites so far.  At Leyendas you can find a surprising variety of animals.  Although I get the feeling that, like many things here in Lima, there wasn’t much of a plan when when they built it.  My guess is they constructed the zoo, put in some cages, and got whatever animals they could to fill them. There were four lions, each in separate cages.  They were thin, possibly malnourished, and sleeping very soundly in separate, seemingly small cement cages with water bowls the size of Brandy’s.  I know lions usually sleep during the day (I’ve been to a lot of zoos), but there was something different about these lions.  The Bengal tiger was a different case.  Also thin, and in a small...

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A Little Help from My Friends

Making friends in Lima Like my Aunt Vicki, I love making lists.  To-do lists are my favorite, but I also enjoy making step-by step instructional lists, lists of places I want to travel, lists of potential blog topics, of men I’ve dated, of men my friends have dated, of men I’m currently dating (short list).  You get the idea. One time in college, I decided to make a list of all my friends.  I added to it for weeks and it began to fill multiple pages of my Kinesiology notebook.  Not that I’ve ever been super popular.  I was a 90-pound, flat-chested, underdog in high school.  It’s just that I’m not that picky.  Most likely, if we spent time together at some point in our lives and I remembered it, you were on the list.  I included my current sister-in-law, Chelsea.  Though at the time we had only met twice, Charlie and I were not dating, and she was not yet married to Ted.  The two times we met, I really liked her and thought we would probably be good friends at some point. This week, I decided to make a list of all my friends in Peru.  It took me less than five minutes.  I included the members of my running group, the owners of the dogs Brandy plays with in the park, Carlos the driver (who I...

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Don't Go to Gamarra

“Don’t go to Gamarra.  It’s not safe.” Ever since Noelle, my American friend from Spanish class, suggested we go there, I was told not to by just about everyone I encountered…Limenians included.  But the fact of the matter is, if I only did what people told me was safe, I would be staying within a 10-block radius of my house.  Boooorrrring. I get tired of people telling me to be careful as if I am naïve and don’t know what I’m getting myself into.  I have traveled plenty on my own, had good experiences, and bad “unsafe” ones.  Despite everything I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t want to miss out on life because I’m afraid.  You can be in Boulder, CO, one of the safest places in the world, and get chased by a mountain lion (stupid lion).  Careful is good, sitting alone on my balcony in San Isidro with the rest of the white people in Peru is boring.  Plus, Noelle had been to Gamarra already and said it was a really cool place to go shopping. So, I donned my “going to an unsafe section of town” outfit (pants with snap pockets, dirty t-shirt, and dark colored bandanna which makes me look like a bad-ass pirate) and off we went.  As the bus worked its way through the surrounding neighborhoods of the market, I better understood the...

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A Day in Lima Contest

Since I’ve started blogging, many of you have shared with me things you’ve learned about Peru online; some of you have even bought books about Peru!  I hope this is because you are trying to plan a trip to come and visit Charlie and I. If not, let’s use your researching skills and have a fun little contest.   The Challenge: Come up with something for me to do for an afternoon in Lima. I’ve been bopping all around the city exploring and am always open to new suggestions.  The world is my oyster and you guys can help me explore it!  If you come up with an appropriate idea, please post it in the comment section of my blog for all readers to see. I’ll choose the best (and most feasible) three ideas to do.  I’ll take pictures and notes and tell you all about it in a future blog post. The three contest winners who come up with the best ideas will receive a postcard from Peru (I know it’s not much, but it’s really expensive to mail things to the States). Here are a couple things to keep in mind. I have a guide book that has many of the museums, churches, tourist activities, etc.,  and am looking for something off the beaten path.  Although, if you think you’ve found something that I might not have...

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Coming Out of a Fog

In the summer of 2005 I hiked Mt. Washington with my uncle Flip and lifelong friend Pat as part of my goal to summit all 48 of New Hampshire’s 4,000 footers.  At an elevation of 6,288 feet above sea level, Mt. Washington is the highest in the White Mountains and home of the world’s most severe and rapidly changing weather.  To this day it still holds the highest recorded wind reading: 231 mph at the weather observatory in 1934. The hike was challenging and the weather was less than desirable.  It was foggy and wet with a light rain and sleet at times.  When we reached the summit, it even snowed…in July!  Cold and wet, we went into the lodge/observatory to warm up and eat our sandwiches.  I noticed women and men in clean dry clothes and “adventure” hats ordering french fries and hamburgers from the cafeteria.  They had taken the train to the summit.  “Jerks,” I muttered to myself.  I couldn’t help but feel disappointed having reached the summit without a grandiose view from the highest of all of my peaks. Hoping to silently wallow in my disappointment, I hiked ahead of Pat and Flip as we began our decent.  After several minutes, I noticed that the precipitation had stopped, although there was still heavy cloud cover and plenty of fog.  I continued to hike, thinking about how...

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