Good morning folks
I trust this finds you in finest fettle and that your weekend was full of splendidness.
A perfect storm of a week with a touch of drama!
Lina was away on a residential course and it was final week of the busiest cycle of the year at work (Marking, exams and more marking, with some massive classes.)
With the help of the mother-in-law, the Nipper and I have been home alone, (I’ve not been taking the Youngster to work!)
Plus the added anti-bonus of idiotic neighbours has meant very little kip and all the no-sleep-induced-making-everything-a-bit-more-difficult-than-it-really-is.
It has been a (one-sided) battle for control, supremacy and domination and (obviously) I lost, completely. There have been tears and tantrums on both sides and I realize now that the Wee One is in fact a miniature bully!
A well deserved outing for Tosh on Saturday night was long anticipated.
Therefore I am patching this together with a roaring hangover, even the keyboard noise is slowly finishing me off.
Here is the weekly wrap-up…
Friday was a dramatic day. I got in from my first class to hear that Sedapal (the Water Board) were turning off the water. Too late, they had done!
(Luckily the building has a tank, so there was enough in there to fill a few pots & pans).
The Nipper and I went hotfooting it to the supermercado, to see a scene of panic and chaos.
Punters were leaving with trolleys overflowing with water. All there was left were two overpriced bottles “con gas” (fizzy water, I can’t stand the stuff, but in an emergency…)
Water has been cut off to 26 districts in the city. Some parts had been without water since Thursday. Sedapal weren’t saying when they were turning it back on. Sweatier than a sauna doesn’t even come close. It could be a long, smelly and sweaty weekend (or longer, nobody knew!)
In a nutshell, what had happened was that dirty flood water from the highlands had entered the water treatment works. Now this is a bit of an example of complete lack of foresight, as the “Huaicos” (flood/landslides/mudslides) always happen in January and February. They follow gravity/the quickest route, so an existing river bed is perfect, but a headache for Sedapal!
The water is back on now, but could be turned back off in a moment’s notice!
Like most bairns of her age, the Nipper has an eye for anything shiny, especially gadgets.
My (still unconnected) phone is often a target of sabotage…
Dawn in Lima is a rather unspectacular affair. Whilst nighttime/dusk is light somebody flicking an on/off switch, going from light to pitch black within 20 minutes, the morning is a murky, grey, diffused through a frosted glass washing machine transformation from owl-time to lark AM.
Whilst getting ready for work (around 5:30am) on Tuesday, I sensed an overwhelming dawn chorus, much louder than usual. There are birds here (pigeons, parakeets and diddy yellow canaries), but not many and 5:30am is still dark. It was a very pleasant surprise, but where was the noise coming from? Glancing outside revealed nothing, so I got ready and lumbered to work.
Wednesday yielded the same.
On Friday as I was putting my phone in my pocket and realized the noise was coming from there!
The Wee One has set a 5:30am alarm to the tone of birdsong…
Another noise that had been puzzling me was a perpetual loop version of “Twinkle, twinkle little star” (or was it ABC?) which came and went throughout the week. Normally coinciding with times when my phone wasn´t hidden/in my pocket. On Friday I spotted a new icon (app) on my phone (I´m still getting used to post-Nokia life), a nursery rhyme app that somebody (not me, nor Lina, leaving one suspect) had downloaded!
The Young ún is fast becoming a young Eddie Mercx (or Big Mig Indurain) and has sussed out that pedaling forwards is much faster than backwards. Insisting on at least one daily training session (sometimes two, or even three) to the park, where I am hard pushed to keep up with her. She is pedalling more miles than I am running.
On Tuesday she decided that some CycloCross might spice things up a bit, which involved steering off the curb (blatantly on purpose), jumping/falling off on the grass and then running away laughing! The Old Man was left to actually carry the bike across the park to the next bit of pavement. With stabilisers and being so tiny (& made of lead by the feel/weight of it), it is not especially easy to carry whilst chasing a giddy toddler.
Returning home we both heard a strange noise (not birds singing nor Twinkle-twinkle). The Nipper said it was a mouse. After a hard training session, the return leg is often a bit slower, but this was slower than normal. The peloton-of-one has mastered riding all the way into the building, through two doors, into the lift and all the way to our lounge without dismounting.
When I pushed the bike into its parking spot, it barely moved. There was no free movement in the front wheel at all. One very buckled front wheel, from a rim that appears to made out of a tin-foil-composite. We got to work on it immediately…
A week of very little (no) training. The ECG graph has sounded a very somber “beeeeeeep…..” flatline, and for once, not because I am either crocked, coming back from being crocked or just about to be crocked.
Time restraints have been my excuse this week. Managed one outing into yonder hills and my Doubtful Round early doors on Saturday, which was great but you can’t race off the back of training once-a-week. Work to do!
PLUS, a wee video snippet for your perusal, right HERE.
(Or here: https://youtu.be/F9ooX-j4E5o )
The problem is that I (still) have some time before any of my (planned) big year, but the clock-is-a-ticking. It generally takes (me) 6 weeks of uninterrupted training to get basically fit, then another 6 weeks to get proper fit (and another 6 weeks to get really fit, but I’ve never managed that, ever, due to crocking myself!)
With January almost gone, February is the make or break month. “Ruricancho” is the first race in mid-March, but it does have a reputation as the hardest race in Lima, we shall see.
Less excuses + more training is needed!
Nobody moves to Lima for peace & quiet, if you do, you’ll be disappointed.
Everything has a noise, everything is noisy and noise is incessant.
I get in from work at 10pm and I’m up at 5:20am, not a huge dossing window.
The city never actually sleeps, but if you ask people about their hobbies, they will say “sleeping”.
(I did once have a student who said that she loved Ice Skating, which must be tricky here, as there are no ice rinks and it never gets below 12°C in winter!)
Here is a quick round-up of a week of no shuteye.
Monday: Upstairs neighbours shouting at each other until 1am.
Tuesday: Upstairs neighbour hammering at 12am.
Wednesday: Party across road until 2am.
Thursday: Upstairs neighbours shouting until 1am.
Friday: (Was ready to kill upstairs neighbours if they kicked off again!) Party with (a really, really awful) band/orchestra next door.
So poor little me only got about 2hrs beauty sleep per night.
Everything has a noise.
The breadman has a comedy horn.
The ice-cream trike sounds like Makka Pakka (In the Night Garden, watch it!)
The knife sharpener wheel man has a duck horn.
Every car has the same sounding super sensitive 5-tone alarm.
Everybody uses their horn, all the time.
Three blocks of flats being built within 50yds of house.
Blaring Reggaeton music at all hours.
Just as I am writing this, the kitchen window of the flat upstairs has fallen 4 floors and smashed into smithereens on the pavement (setting off a car alarm).
You get the idea!
This is why I wear my headphones all the time and love to escape to the hills.
(I do wish now I’d grabbed a handful of earplugs when I clocked out on my last shift at the Brewery!)
“Sleep when you’re dead” someone once said!
A neet oot!
(Photo courtesy of Teresa T)
Long anticipated, I was wishing away my sleepless week from Monday onwards.
My good mate, Cameron, is leaving these fair shores. Peru’s loss.
A top lad and a true gentleman who will be missed.
A celebration was in order,
(Photo courtesy of Cameron)
Checked out the new re-fit of “Houlihan’s” in Miraflores first (sadly the two-for-one happy hour deal is now gone, maybe not a bad thing for an early start).
Then onto Barranco and the BBC (Barranco Beer Company), which we discovered how has a rooftop bar (with shambolic service). Later on we piled into a club of which name I cannot remember, but it was a good night and rightly so, I am suffering like dog today!
I recently had a student who said they were a huge fan of Monty Python.
(The conversation was in Spanish, the guy’s English was not great, but better than my Spanish!)
I was curious just how much the lad actually “got”.
Monty Python is a bit out-there, (putting it mildly!)
(On a par with…)
I stumbled across this gem of a VIDEO.
On that note, I wish you a mighty fine week.
Johnny, Lina & the Nipper