Pisco sours and "Combat Camera"
It's been WAY too long. We both used to travel a lot. We loved to travel, especially the rougher, more adventurous kind of travel that brings you unpackaged experience. We even moved to Japan for 3 years, right after our wedding - just to shake things up. But we've been raising our three kids, and somehow it became 10, 15, then almost 20 years without any serious travel. 20 years! But this summer, for the first time, all the kids are in camp at the same time. This is our chance. So here we are, excited (finally!) and nervous (are we too old?). We are ready - so ready! - to streeeeetch that comfort zone again. And it begins, here in Lima. And for us, Lima is just an airport, an airport hotel, and the guy we meet at the hotel bar. We arrive late and go straight across the street to the hotel. It is way too elegant for our scruffy selves, but a cool relief from the grabby chaos outside. We clean up and go downstairs for our complimentary Pisco Sours, when we notice a tall, handsome man next to us. He looks exhausted. We strike up a conversation, and find out he is an American, a Captain in the Marines. His assignment is unusual: He is in charge of filming and recording the activities of the military in the area. His designation is "Combat Camera" and has been filming with the troops for 20 years. He is not a part of the media branch of the military, he says, so he records everything - good and bad. In the meantime he is also creating a website showing activities - Marines building a school, etc. - that the conventional press generally doesn't cover. He is eager for us to check out the website as we are the "public" that he is targeting. We have mixed feelings about it all, but it is a fascinating conversation. Only one day down and we've already met one of those people you only meet when travelling!