What Would You Do with 5 Unexpected Days in Foreign Country?

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After a kick-ass week traveling through Peru with my MOM-Sanity partner coach, Michelle Kenney Carlson, I ended up back in Lima to wait for a few days to meet the hubs and my little guy in the Tumbes region of Peru where we have our family beach house.

I was excited to spend a few days in Lima. I love it here. I have my favorite pocket of the city San Isidro with restaurants and shops I know and even a Starbucks so I can get my daily fix.

Although there had been rains near our home and even some in Lima, we had been pretty much isolated from the devastation that has now taken over almost half of Peru. I’m not sure how much coverage it’s getting at home, but monumental rains have all but destroyed entire cities with mudslides, crested rivers, washed out bridges and collapsed roads.

Our little town had been somewhat unaffected. That however changed rapidly soon after I got to Lima.

The roads in and of out our town became compromised and the closest major cities both experienced (and continue to experience) bad rains as well as the after-effects.

Andre and Niko’s trip was cancelled, and thanks LATAM airlines those changes were easy and quick.  My trip wasn’t however as easily changed. I had the choice of paying a $2000 fee or spend 10 days alone here in Lima.

I do love the city but that’s a long time to be away. After 3 hours of haggling with the airlines I was finally able to secure a flight home Monday Morning leaving me flying solo in Lima for 5 days.

Although I did have a bit of a panic at first, I realized that stress wasn’t going to improve the situation. So instead of the stress perspective I went with one of opportunity–what could I do with these days?

Thankfully in Lima, with a little creativity, research and some fearlessness, the possibilities have been endless

Inspired by my Michelle who found time to do yoga while in Cusco, I decided to look for some Pilates classes. Thanks to good old Google, I found the most incredible (English speaking) Pilates teacher who also happened to have 2 adorable Labradors…wet puppy kisses are a great motivator…In fact I have worked out every day since arriving here in Lima.
Next…I found a Spanish language school where I have been taking daily Spanish lessons. This was a  leap for me. With everyone being bilingual in our house, I knew I needed to learn Spanish but was totally intimidated to make it happen. With the gift of these days, I didn’t have much to loose so I found a place and signed myself up.

Although  challenging, these endeavors were both somewhat in my comfort zone. What has been hardest has been to rest. I am so used to being on the go, almost maniacally so, that to make myself stay in my hotel room and watch TV has been an effort.

Even as of yesterday, when my whole body ached from all the walking and the Pilates and the heat, I had the impulse to go check out Barranco, the arts district of Lima.

Isn’t that kind of ridiculous? It’s like the dream I always ask for–time to do nothing by myself and rest–was magically presented to me and I was fighting it tooth and nail.

But that stopped yesterday evening when I came to my senses and vowed not to do anything extra between then and my after midnight flight tonight.

Today I have gone for a massage and a quick lunch but have otherwise not left my hotel room. The inclination to visit the Inka craft market percolated but around 3pm, but thanks to reruns of The Mentalist and the need to book our replacement trip to Peru with American Express travel, I am happy to report that I have basically been in bed all day.

I know it sounds ridiculous, but I am far more proud of the accomplishment of rest than of the Pilates or the Spanish. Being busy is a modern day obsession. Yes I was taking care of myself but was I really? Clearly I was working on improving myself but taking care? Maybe not…not until that is I made a date with my bed!

Here’s to hoping I can build on this small step and keep making the choice to relax when I get home!



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