Donating to Venezuelan Refugees in Peru

gAGCgf4G-Zr7a9eoeHwRAIwP0n0R6G46TAyNaPAY6-YDeZdJq8ufGgLjTBf_JcVkv44PKhzu5PZ0vTswYFAHOc77JyVVcf96oToJssYjtm25kvYXchx77eoRjGoATmdeRVw6xOa4x2oWmlHoVITSi-hfwSWMOUjI7Bh_VhgQfm_UW789gze55H2XNZI recently cleaned out my closet and donated eleven large sacks of clothes and shoes to an NGO that assists Venezuelans in Peru, Union for Venezuelans in Peru. If you want to donate, call the executive director, Martha, 992-824-991, and she will meet you at the Union for Venezuelans in Peru at Avenida Benavides 3082, which is actually located on the Ovalo Higuereta, in Surco. The building is not marked as the Union has not spent money on signage (the employees wore white work shirts with the name of the organization on them). The office is on the third floor but it was not open yet when I made my delivery. The Union for Venezuelans in Peru will also pick up.

When I chatted with Martha, she explained that the refugees are in need of everything as they arrive only with what they can carry in their hands. She said that many are young families. She told us about a family that were happy as they picked up an inflatable mattress. Makes one think.

In the last few years, nearly a million Venezuelan refugees have arrived in Peru. Thirty years ago, Peruvians were fleeing to Venezuela and not the situation is reverse. Peru is currently in the honeymoon phase of this reverse situation and the Peruvians are welcoming the Venezuelans with resident permits and work permits. Many work as taxi drivers, in restaurants, and some sell candy to make a bit of income (I know one shop owner who gives the candy for free the first time around so that the refugee can build a bit of capital — like the Grameen system — although this shop owner will probably not get a Nobel prize. He does it for the humanity of the situation). I have seen Peruvians buy these candies out of an act of charity, much in the vein of “there but for the grace of God, go I.”

mq85phLqAjhl1iHQxC4cx1aN7zgb84xGEJevOLPTPM4-xKS6pK8lDwuoHrH0oT25-SN_OLWQjWGxAzxR0LhpdGbBCoVT2sOEzGZmvywFdL_E1_eUepLKuP-1-ncp2hKTEhrORqjEiEvr26IeH5QYgmR4wZX8WoysG75L-XQ9F4nL2CQFyE-yIdOGdLIn many of the shops and restaurants, the workers are Venezuelans. They have the advantage that they speak the local language. When I was in Port of Spain, many of the workers were Venezuelans (Trinidad is only a few miles off the coast of Venezuela). This proximity means that many Trinis speak Spanish as well. I actually understood the Spanish better than the Trini form of English when in Trinidad.

Here in Lima, due to the influx of Venezuelans, there are more and more Venezuelan eateries. When I lived in Caracas, I developed a taste for arepas and now I can find good ones here as well. I did not get some after the trip to donate clothes. I had enough food for thought.

 

Kuelap – 10,000 Monumental Steps!

RRtWEL4ekhQ5e9hCh89oAcmbuJtmRcHllsNmx3MxzihyObYVd_N94ag6vCdt6jzpjcwkw2ji27uG4aN_9pEBPDYs9OP-CRLE5UpOfS83hJi8lxHUu74V86wWTXqnnFeH6wZmR-nW2strbfEDb_6TIifq4QYzwR2ShwyZxZ7Zjghuwoi4S3jVfHUB52The hot spot to visit in Peru is still Machu Picchu. But, when you have done that, you might want to see the newest hot spot — Kuelap! Cuelap/Kuelap is located up near the town of Chachapoyas in a region called Amazonas, not to be confused with the Amazon river area. Kuelap is older than Machu Picchu and it’s not as majestic but it’s also got a few million fewer visitors (not that it felt that way!). Chachapoyas is up at 8,000 feet so be prepared to suffer for the view.

IMG-5725Kuelap is nearby and one can take Peru’s first cable car or “teleferico” up to the base of the archaeological site. One takes a bus to the cable car, then the 20 minute cable car ride over the ravine, then a three kilometer walk up flat stone steps. If you have good knees and are relatively fit, you can get up to the citadel and through in a bit over an hour. If you have bad knees, you can also take a horse up to the base of the citadel. If you want to walk all the way up and have bad knees… it can take two hours. There are many rest stops and nice views along the way, but it is an uphill walk. All the way.

TsvrOtm4NpTC1Dk6sFnydn1bvETgtQ6M1uFD9_HzrM-FmvxyBt4QbmarjtVBk3H6jACyyWseUH_dBN2kBa3yOGUqYFaA-AiRiRTr6sgn5wEENqmXWkxK4JxyuDGJErJIABWu5cNX83eIXxkweL3NyOoj0J8P8W0XZ6pPQsYMs01aY5rLEj6OwgVEJVA nice thing about Kuelap is that due to its cultural designation, there are scaffolds and walkways all over so that the cultural heritage won’t get rubbed away by visitors. You can’t even sit down.

IMG-5718But, at the base at the end of the cable car ride, where you buy your tickets, is a cafe, a museum, souvenirs, and lots of walls at just the right height for sitting on. The cafe may have one of the best views around but they don’t seem to advertise that.

IMG-5711There are many things to see in the Chachapoyas area including the famous Gocta Falls, but more about that another time.

 

Top Korean Restaurants in Lima

qUIakxR7l_BQmh7XPsHB2G1HrdTGT2Uk46s4tK9xT5S7QBTNyFQ-5l6nsxVcKnq_SMvg4VX6IrCywtIfgNgLSUB0NUPW3MCO8rhfHNdPO2LTX_XySyDDl17LkVyMHmAXu4PtnW9YSjEVidbuMQ13RECY2EyRz9ZNxj5_5F0lUEpooKyJWPzcu-w-wMIt has taken me over a year, but I finally made it to all the Korean restaurants in Lima (bar the instant ramen noodle place in Arenales Mall and the bingsoo dessert place downtown). Here is my review of the restaurants.

3rjzR2CS4Z78rni2qjXt-cTtvunIMkKnLHzNn3KyJY1ONgsGpAmJ5VWjz_C0x07SL3zb-GMD9Tn4PxRGUttwO7YUBNG6YTDX8a2xl3uyldHvNd-E9KhZlUHkAiQ4AQxRYVSNAVF8DqBai-tO-egm-wmgkCYKbBzx7U6m3JdR-muhr2KruMpbp9ewOA1. Dae Jang Geum, Av San Borja Sur 279, San Borja: The name of this place is named after a female palace chef and style of cooking. This place has been visited by Gaston Acurio. I like the food here including the bbq.

2. Arirang, Calle Las Orquídeas 443, San Isidro: This place is closest to Miraflores and is located in the business district. Also good food including bbq.

1sBRR0Tv8kvCfVFE7kB3vtxzeKAHxKQitYBHpnVmiC4v2ZXUtL5Pg9RP0grGXSMCbF1Q7LRiXyc605ld3PQYPZvIKi731RWsjuP41QDbmozaFeufD1sjNVFXqHznBfbtWq3ymoVR4N4TxsW4siMeAYFQQRDW_uMaQ931kNpqyL6k6AXfJLSdnyHLxV3. Han Kook Kwan, Av San Luis 2256, San Borja: This place doesn’t open until 2 pm on Sundays! The lady who owns the place is Korean. The food here is probably more “authentic” from the old days… all I know is that I’m not good at eating raw crab in the shell (see lower left corner in photo below). I’d say to eat here if you want a more homey style of food.

TLNLCBxrDBMvuFbr9PEfr0m5r5Fy9ayUEe5q0Q2mcy-jveGxqvxiEoCzIqvKoyjAamnhYRcvtQy1Skari0SC1OMcLbPdEAcTUfXBoW_EKMRIAXvh7eEDj-0JFRkCnx5rjZxRcR8krRbdT4Hl-ysDcTVfakuSLgXBx0TwaLus__VckcBvCr7SpM9kmA4. Nodaji, Av. Aviación 3257, San Borja: The good thing about this place is that it’s next door to Assi, the Korean store. The food was not anything special but the place was busy and had lots of tour buses parked outside.

5. Coreano Dos Hermanos, Av. Aviación 4812, Santiago de Surco: This is upstairs… the dumplings were Chinese style, had gochuchang inside, and steamed like dim sum. But, the japchae noodles were good.

6. Namu, Centro Comercial Arenales, Cuadra 17, Av. Arenales 1737, Lince: This place is located in the basement of the Arenales Mall. It’s a casual place with K pop playing and teeny boppers singing along…

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7. Bingsu, Jirón Callao 161, Cercado de Lima and Av. Gral. Eugenio Garzón 1360, Jesús María. This Korean shaved ice dessert, bingsu, is served in these two locations. The branch in Jesus Maria is newer so still shiny and new. Just down the street from the new place mentioned below.

8. Seoul Chicken, Avenida General Eugenio Garzón, 1474 Jesús María, opened in July 2019, this place serves deep fried chicken, fries, ramen, and mandu (dumplings or as they are called here, “empanadas”). The wings are not the crazy addictive rice-flour-coated wings of BonChon chicken as these taste more like sweet and sour chicken. But, the owner is Korean and they play K-pop videos on the TV.