Last Monday a friend invited us to his world where he works and operates two stores in a shopping district called 'Gamarra.' It is the largest textile market in Peru and I confess I have never seen anything like it anywhere. It is a labyrinth of shops in one very large block with stores selling everything imaginable related to clothing and textiles. Previously I had bought a number casual shirts very inexpensively in Gamarra. He supplies textiles to shirt makers and has a huge inventory of fabric so he does not deal with the public directly. He works Saturdays in the Temple, some days as long as 14 hours keeping the Bautisterio running and functioning smoothly. He does this each week.
It is relatively safe in Gamarra, but none of us Norte Americanos ever venture there in the afternoons and we are always are out of there early in the day. Security police and cameras are everywhere, but you do observe some rules. We had a fine lunch at one of our friend's favorites and then he wanted to show us the 'real' Peru. We had no idea what he was talking about or where we were going. He assured us it was very close.
|Monday mornings are not very crowded and it is a good time |
and day to visit though some stores were not open.
|One of many narrow aisles selling fruits and vegetables at |
extremely low prices.
| RA did buy a 1/4 kilo or dried oregano, about two quarts worth.|
That is a lot of spice. It was the smallest quantity they would sell.
|Bees were working and building their hive in one of the stalls. We were |
given samples of the honey comb and bee pollen. I did read that pollen
contains a a number of kinds of bacteria and mold so we later disposed
of the the bottle we purchased.
|Aluminum cookware is also to be found in La Parada|
|An open top bag of bee pollen being reclaimed by a few bees.|
The elections next month will be important for the present and future of Peru. The huge support for the leading and left wing vote getter in the primary elections from the poorer areas of this country should send a powerful message to those in power. Ignore the poor and very poor and solutions may not always be as peaceful as the electoral process of the ballot box. No one wants to see the chaos, unrest, terror and murders Peru suffered for decades at the hands of the Sendero Luminoso or 'Shining Path' as they were called.
|We intended to purchase some citrus in La Parada. We love|
the mandarin oranges and tangerines in Peru. They too were
about one third of our neighborhood grocery store.
We appreciate our friend for having confidence in us and showing us a part of Lima we had never seen. Likely, we will not return to La Parada. It was fascinating place and we are glad we ventured to the 'real' Peru. In many ways it reminded us of the bazaars we had visited in Istanbul Turkiye many years ago.
|Live frogs and toads are kept in several booths we passed.|
The purpose is to consume these in a 'health' drink called
extracto de rana.
|Main Street in La Parada. The red onions on the right are|
for sale for 1 Sole or about 37 cents per kilogram. That
is about 16 cents per pound.