There are some people who can operate at full capacity on very little sleep. I am not one of them. The night before my mom and I left for our trip to Peru I was uptight about not getting enough sleep, even though we were “only” getting up at 6 am, not to mention I was filled with excitement and nervous energy about our trip. I took two Benadryl and eventually fell asleep.
After getting up and showering my husband drove me and my mom to Los Angeles international airport. Normally I love flying internationally about of LAX because the Tom Bradley international terminal is much nicer than the rest of the airport but we were flying AeroMexio which is located in terminal two, which meant no Tom Bradley for me on this trip. Prior to leaving I had put a ton of effort of preparing for this trip. I had trained for almost year to prepare for the Inca Trail but I had also put a lot of effort into improving my Spanish language skills. As luck would love it one of my favorite Spanish Language songs, “Tren al Sur” by Los Prisioneros was on the radio.
Not only is the song is Spanish but Los Prisioners are from South America so it thought it was a cool moment.
After being dropped off at LAX by my husband my mom and I checked out bag, went through security and had a breakfast at the airport.
In 2011-2013 my big trip was to Europe flying British Airways, while BA may not have the most comfortable seats in the friendly skies they do have a great entertainment selection. AeroMexico had better seats but really missed the entertainment options of BA because having the right entertainment options really make a huge difference when traveling long distances. The first leg of our voyage was from Los Angeles to Mexico City, the flight takes about four hours. On that leg of the flight AeroMexico showed two episodes of “Suburgatory” and one episode of “How I Met Your Mother” as well as some car racing. The two sitcom episodes (of shows I don’t normally watch) did keep me entertained about an hour and a half but left some serious downtime for the rest of the flight. By the time we landed in Mexico City I was defiantly getting a little antsy (not to mention the sandwich they gave us on this flight was lackluster at best).
For some reason the airport in Mexico City makes you go through immigration and customs even if you are just passing through.
The advantage of this is that you can get an extra stamp in your passport. The disadvantage is that you have to sand in multiple lines, and wait for your baggage. I have flown through London Heathrow airport six times and they don’t make you go through immigration and customs. As much as I would love to have a UK stamp on my passport I prefer the London Heathrow way over the Mexico City way.
After my mom and I got through immigration and customs we did take advantage of one additional thing. We left the airport for a couple of minutes. At least now I can say I’ve really been to Mexico City.
After our quick exit of the airport we went back though security (where we didn’t have to take off our shoes) and waited for our flight to Lima.
One thing I learned the hard way on my first long flight in 2011 is that you need to buy the biggest bottle of water you can or you will end up a dehydrated mess. I made sure to buy a big bottle of water in Mexico City because the second leg of our journey was the Mexico City to Lima flight which lasts six hours.
Even though the flight from Mexico City to Lima was longer I enjoyed more. The food was better (a chicken skewer dish), it was my turn for the window seat and the entertainment included movies.
I wasn’t crazy about the movies but they passed the time. The two movies AeroMexico showed on this flight were “The Grand Budapest Hotel”; it was the usual Wes Anderson quirkiness. I didn’t love it but it was better than both “The Royal Tenenbaums” and “Rushmore”. The second movie they showed was “Monument’s Men”, which also was okay. Matt Damon and Jean Dujardin were the saving graces for me.
Before it got dark I realized were flying over the Pacific Ocean, which meant that after several hours when I saw the flights of a few cities below it meant we were flying over the northern part of South America. Another thing I really missed about BA was the map that will tell you exactly where you are on your journey.
As we made our descent into Lima I was both excited and nervous. I was excited to be in South America and Peru but I was nervous. I was nervous because my refried Spanish was all we had to rely on and I was traveling with my mom who isn’t as experiences in international traveling as I am. Luckily the Lima airport was pretty easy.
In my research I found that there was a Ramada hotel across the street from the airport in Lima which is very convenient if you are flying out the next day to Cuzco (which we were) so I made a reservation at this hotel. Even though I knew that the hotel was across the street I was amazed which how easy it was. I was so relieved that we didn’t have to deal with the craziness of getting a cab after flying all day.
Checking into the hotel was easy (I began to find that my Spanish was good enough) and they gave us a complimentary bottle of water (which is a must since tap water is not safe to drink in Peru). I really liked our room at first night in Lima.
I was consumed by that bizarre travel fugue state that happens when you step off the plane and you are in a completely different land. We didn’t stay up too late because we were tired and the next day was our flight from Lima to Cuzco/Cusco.
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