Traipsing around the streets and mountains of Peru, while holding onto my love’s slender hand, could only be described as whimsical.
There’s something about being in a foreign country that brought us closer together. Maybe it was the food poisoning on a moving train or finding ourselves hopelessly lost. But I think ultimately, it was because we were embarking on an adventure and didn’t quite know how it would end.
I don’t want to speak for him, but I think he would agree.
We were in Peru for a mere week. We wanted to go longer, but with my demanding job and Bae’s lack of one, a week was all we could manage.
We witnessed so much beauty. We dared not go to sleep on the train ride from Cusco to Aguas Calientes in fear of missing the sprawling farmland that turned into snow capped mountains in the span of three hours. The sights from the window took my breath away, but so did Bae’s ever-present smile.
The highlight of our trip was Machu Picchu. I would like to say we opted to take a bus all the way to the top of the ancient Incan ruins because of time constraints, but if we’re being honest, I suggested the bus because I didn’t think Bae could handle the hike. He doesn’t have very strong legs. At one point, I even had to carry him around the famous site.
Eating all the delicious Peruvian food was a delight. I consistently ordered lomo saltado, while Bae favored the ceviche. A few nights we had a bit too much wine with dinner and spent hours at the table giggling about the tourists who wore socks with sandals long after our plates were cleared.
We stayed in hostels the whole week because they were cheap. We would rather have extra cash in our pockets than mints on our pillows.
One of the places had less than ideal water temperature. It wasn’t freezing. It was just warm enough to coax us into jumping in, but cold enough to not actually get clean. It was just a frenzy of randomly scrubbing and cursing.
Sure, there weren’t all good times. One night we were sitting quietly in the corner of a bar and a local man sat down next to me and blatantly started flirting. It was as if Bae wasn’t even there. He shot the stranger smoldering looks while I tried to politely brush the guy off.
I feel ashamed for even thinking this, but I was flattered. He was the exact opposite of Bae- so full of life and energy. This local also had the most welcoming brown eyes. Sometimes I think Bae’s eyes, while a beautiful shade of blue, don’t have any warmth.
There were a few times during the trip when we just stayed in bed. It was our vacation after all. I would read or study the maps while he gazed up at the ceiling tiles.
Faster than I could blink, (Bae doesn’t actually blink much) we were on a plane back to Florida. I returned to my job and he went back to whatever he does while I’m at work.
Our relationship might not last forever. Some have even described it as fictional. But when times get tense and I feel like he’s not listening and he gets annoyed when I talk for him, I will remember the magical times we had in Peru.