A woman on the Combi is falling asleep with her baby in her arms.  She’s so tired she can’t keep her eyes open and keeps almost falling out of her chair and dropping the child.  The Peruvians take turns standing guard over her and the baby to make sure they don’t fall.  When someone reaches their stop they just tap the next person, and they take over the job.


Every conversation I have with a Peruvian woman goes like this:

– Are you married?

– Yes.

– How many children do you have?

– None.

– None?

– None.

– How many will you have?

– (I launch into a two minute description of the reasons I don’t have children and the reasons why I don’t want them.  They stare blankly)

– So how many children will you have then?

– Two.  I will have two.

Alternate conversation:

– You won’t see your husband for six months?

– Correct.

– Amor de lejos, amor de cuatro (Long distance love is a love with four people.)


The Combi stops are pretty hysterical.  There aren’t any actual bus stops, especially in the areas where it’s the most run down. (Um, Abby, we use the term “developing” not run-down.)  People just yell descriptive terms at the driver, which eventually become the standard stops.  My favorite stop name so far is “Two Posts” – which is exactly what you think it is –  two metal poles stuck in the ground in the middle of nowhere.


Lowlight: Saw an adorable puppy….. so skinny, starving….. eating a dead dog.


At night there are security guards that patrol around to try and ward off would be pick-pockets, etc.  It’s a little bit homoerotic.  Two men ride around on one motorcycle, sitting extremely erect and taking their job pretty seriously.  The first man drives, and the second man intermittently blows a whistle, which I can only assume works on thieves the way dog whistles do on animals.  The rest of us can’t really understand it or hear it, but they can’t help but be affected.

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