Blogging a dead horse…


Good morning folks

I trust you’re well and had a mighty fine weekend.
Short blog this week, not much to write home about.
If I am brutally honest, it’s been a shocker, so I’ll try not to whinge-on too much.


Here is the weekly Monday morning blog.

A week is a long time in Peruvian politics!

Last week it was the turn of Alberto Fujimori (Fuji Senior) to go back to the land of porridge.
This week, as a part of a special two-for-one deal, his daughter, Keiko, leader of the opposition party will also be tasting prison food!


In their twisting-&-a-turning path of political chaos, the Fujimoris (could be a new reality show) have been causing a bit of a rumpus for quite some time.

Regarding FujiSenior, it was before my time and I am not really qualified to comment.
They were very different times back then and the question whether whether Alberto was a good ‘un or a wrong ‘un, is a question that splits the population (and not in a rich/poor, not a left/right way).

Some say he stopped terrorism in its tracks whilst others say he just sent his death squads out and killed innocent people indiscriminately, but as I said, I am not qualified to comment on that.


Ousted ex-president, PPK cut a deal with Kenji Fujimori (son of Alberto and brother of Keiko) to free his Old Man from the Nick. Surprisingly/not surprisingly this caused a rift in congress and also in the Fujihousehold, but Alberto was freed, later PPK was removed/resigned and later still Alberto was heading back to the Clink, to be followed by Keiko.


Now possibly (allegedly) all the top politicians have had their finger in the dirty “Odebrecht” pie and heads are rolling, many are implicated in “Operation Carwash” (Operação Lava Jato) “The operation has included more than one thousand warrants for search and seizure, temporary and preventive detention and coercive measures, with the aim of ascertaining the extent of a money laundering scheme suspected of moving more than $9.5 billion…”

So, Keiko has a candle firmly blazing under her backside right now, but if anything will actually come of it remains to be seen.


As a footnote, if you are ever escorting a dodgy politician to the Nick, putting a selfie with said criminal (allegedly) is not a wise thing to put on your facebook, as these two WPCs found out to their detriment!

Watch this space…



Just five weeks to go until El Misti sky race and it’s not been a week when I’ve set the hills (or even pavements) alight. Circumstances dictated no outings to the hills/hounds, so I’ve been banished/restricted to the mean streets instead. Plodding.

I saw one of the top trail runners whilst out on my local tarmac, but it resulted in a DAN situation (watch this VIDEO for an explanation).


The only other event worthy of mention was the dramatic explosion of a small carrier bag under my size 13s, which was unfortunately concealing a dirty nappy, a comedy skid (no pun intended) ensued and I lumbered off to find a patch of grass to wipe my soiled sneakers on, nice!

Five weeks to go, don’t panic, don’t panic…



The only sunshine of the week…

The Nipper’s school is 5.8 miles away, in Lima morning traffic that can take anything between 45-90mins. I take the Wee One on the bus(es) 3 times a week, in a mad, wacky races style race to get there by 8am. Normally I run back (avoiding nappies best I can).

Lina goes to pick her up, but by the time they get back, I’m normally on my way to work, and by the time I get home, they are both asleep, so in a nutshell, our paths don’t really cross :-/

So, as Lina was away on a study weekend, the Nipper and I had a free rein and fancying a change from facepainting, we had heard about another place…


I am not a zoo person, I really don’t like them as places.

I can just about remember a trip as a kid to Knowsley Safari Park (where, naturally the thieving St. Helens homeboy monkeys stole the car trimmings, or I may be dreaming, but it was a common occurrence) and I can barely remember a trip to Chester Zoo (school sixth form trip where Scrumpy almost stopped play!)

However, at the Parque de la Amistad, the wildlife “farm” is not a good place, especially in summer, so we heard of a new place and went to check it out.

It was a kind-of-zoo inside a school, best of all, there was nobody there!
Most animals were new to the Nipper and she loved it :-)

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There was no facepainting, but pizza was on the menu afterwards :-)


The second time I came back to Peru (2005), I really had no idea. To say I was naive was the understatement of the millennium. Without contacts/friends, I really struggled to find work and my first job at (the infamous) NLC, paid me a whopping 6 soles (£1 at the time) an hour. (I stress that I didn’t come to Peru to earn a fortune, so I started at the right place!)

Due to a mix-up in my interview, I thought I was working 9-5, but it transpired I was working 5-9 (including Saturdays), so after my rent/transport, I had 5 soles (just under a pound) per day for food. Lean times indeed…

I did manage to find other numbers around town, dotted in the 5 corners of the city, which somehow, miraculously all slotted into the timetable of a very full day on the (also full) combis.


A few months later I had an interview for another job, close to where I was living, which went well. they then called to give me the thumbs-up and my start date, that was the easy bit, the hard part was going to my 4 other bosses to say I was leaving…


Two of them took it well (ie. they didn’t really care), one was a bit shirty and the last one went bananas! The boss gave me a proper dressing down and docked my wages and penalised me (docking all my wages upfront for the rest of the month and then charging me for the classes I had not yet given. I am not sure if what she did was legal, but then again, I wasn’t exactly “official” at the time). So, it cost me.

Anyway, I had been promised a full day (8am-4pm) of classes in one place, close to my house.
I skipped along to my new job on my first day to find a table full of food, a veritable banquet, in the classroom.
With my 5-soles-a-day diet, it looked like a proper feast, but who was it for???

My new boss sat me down and told me to get stuck in, but at 8am I wasn’t really in the mood for seafood. (Artists impression below is a bit more artistic than reality was).


“The thing is…” is always a phrase that pricks your ears up and my new boss launched into a bizarre unrelated nonsensical tale, at the end of which rambling nonsense, it turned out that there was no job, but as a special favour he could offer me a 1hr “Grammar Awareness” course twice a week!
(All this after I had pretty much burnt all my previous bridges).


The thing is he couldn’t really see what he had done wrong and by offering me a table of food, expected me to be smiling and grateful. When basically I was screwed!

Fast forward to 2018. Times have changed and I have a good job that I love, it is possibly the best thing about being here for me. Although I really don’t know if/when my Arequipa dream will ever come into fruition…


Lights, camera, no action (a.k.a. Knockback!)

Last week I went for an audition for a part in a Pannetone commercial.
On Wednesday I was told I was pre-selected and to book the day off work (easier said than done, but I managed to, provisionally).
I was told that I would get a definite “si” on Friday, or at the latest, Saturday (for a Monday shoot).
Friday came and went, no answer to my calls/texts.
Got through on Saturday to be told that my contact doesn’t work Saturdays, but she would call me.
She didn’t!

untited is officially boycotting Blanca Flor pannetone this Christmas.
(Can’t stand the stuff anyway…)

Ar$e of the week!


I try not to rant too much about noise, it is part & parcel of Lima life and as incessant as it is inescapable, but a special mention for the neighbours two floors up who have had parties almost every night this week. The revellers like to shout above the sound of their disco speakers and there is obviously a loud Peruvian Bobby Davro present, as all the lads gush over him, which is a bit trying at 3am, the 4th night running.

Raider’s round-up.

Close season signings continue, but the big news of the Rugby League week was the Grand Final between the Pie Eaters and the Wire. The only highlights I could find, that I could watch in Peru was this SNIPPET.

Wigan beat Warrington 12:4, giving Shaun Wane a well deserved send-off!

And finally

Ever get sick of “Press 1 for customer services, etc…”
Been trying to get some bank statements this week.
2 second job?
Yeah right, BCP you useless ******s!
3 trips to the bank and something akin to THIS!

Have a good week, hopefully the sun will be out by next week…

Johnny, Lina & the Nipper


p.s. I said it was a bad week. Ran out of HP, not convinced that Daddies Sauce is in the same league…

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