My First Stolen Item

DSC03426roofterrace.JPG

This blog entry about the events of Thursday, January 01, 2004 was originally posted on January 02, 2004.

DAY 75: Being in a No Internet Zone (aka N.I.Z.) for two days or more often forces me to take an entire day to sit in front of a computer to catch up on The Blog.  On my last day in Arequipa, that’s what I did.

After sorting through photos and writing for hours on my laptop in my room, I went down the stairs, passed the roof terrace (picture above) to grab some breakfast.  There was a German guy sitting by himself at a table in the courtyard garden, and he invited me to sit with him.  His name was Jan, an engineer on vacation for six weeks from his southern Germany job at Siemens.  A well-traveled person himself, Jan suggested to me different things I could and should do once I arrive in South Africa and the Middle East.  He was an enthusiastic one who also needed entire days to just chill out — he would spend the day reading Michael Crichton’s Rising Sun.  I told him my travel plans, about how I was to leave for an overnight bus to Puno that night with the company San Cristobal del Sur.

“Be careful of your stuff on San Cristobal.  A lot of the poorer people take that line,” he warned.  I thought nothing of it because I had taken San Cristobal before with no problems.  Jan suggested I take a fancy “royal class” tourist bus for about three times the price.  I thought perhaps all his suggestions were based on the fact that he was a traveler on a higher budget scale — he suggested I rent a car in South Africa rather than taking the backpacker buses.

“I’ve had no problems with San Cristobal before,” I told him.  “It was the only night bus I could find to Puno, and I figure I’d just sleep the night and save the money I would have used on a hostel.”

He told me the bus trip was only five hours and not all night like the man at the ticket counter who sold me my ticket the night before said. 


THE REST OF THE DAY, I wandered around the Plaza das Armas’ for a bit where people were setting up inflatable camels and three king mannequins near the cathedral for the upcoming Three Kings Epiphany Day on January 6.  I worked on Blog duties, cursing out “Blog” when I kept on crashing or loosing a connection at the cheap internet cafe I was working in.  Catching up from two days in an N.I.Z. is a lot of work (especially when you try and get creative on Day 73) and I couldn’t imagine what catching up would be like if and when I take a 4-6 week overland tour through Africa.

As I was working in the internet cafe, Cyndi Lauper’s “Goonies are Good Enough” came on the radio, one of many pop songs from the 80’s that I had been hearing all over Arequipa.  A previous night I had pizza in a restaurant that showed old 80’s music videos — which was good for me since I missed out on most of them, not having cable television until the late 90’s.  (Lionel Richie’s video for “Hello” came on and I was surprised when, oh!, the blind woman was sculpting a head statue of Lionel Richie all that time!)  During our first breakfast in the restaurant in Cabanaconde, Heidi and I were greeted to the musical stylings of Yes’ “Owner of a Lonely Heart” and Meatloaf’s “Anything for Love.”  During our second breakfast there, we heard the greatest hits of Aerosmith.

Aside from the 80’s pop charts, the music in Peru varies from Latin pop — including Paulina Rubio, Shakira and this one song that is played everywhere that I am determined to find the name of — to American pop (Christina Aguilera, J.Lo, Ricky Martin to name a few) to traditional Andean music that sounds like a cross between salsa and traditional music from India, mixed in with plucked harp strings and cheesy Casio keyboard drum samples.  Sometimes the traditional Andean music is agreeable, but sometimes it just goes on and on and on, and you get a feeling like you’d rather take a spongebath with sandpaper than be subjected to more of it.


IN THE EVENING I TOOK A TAXI to the bus terminal to hop on my overnight bus to Puno.  It was half an hour late, which was to be expected already.  I sat on the bus next to a kind but questionable Peruvian guy from Puno, who I chatted with for a while.  I kept my guard up, only sleeping with my bag locked, strap wrapped around my leg and my hands in my pockets.  Nothing ever happened through the night until I noticed that my rain jacket that I had carelessly just put in the overhead bin thinking it wasn’t valuable enough to steal, was missing.  I looked around but saw nothing — I assumed someone who got off the bus at an early stop just snagged it.  I blamed myself, but realized it wasn’t the end of the world — it’s all just part of the drama of travel.

Jan was right; the bus was only about five hours long, which brought me in Puno’s bus terminal at the odd hour of 2:30 in the morning.  Luckily I met an Australian on the bus who initially kept his guard up with me until he heard my American accent.  Both of us were stuck in the middle of the morning without any hostel reservations anywhere, but luckily a man in the terminal approached us with a hostel brochure that would take us in for 10 soles each in a shared room.  Although the Australian planned on just sleeping in the terminal, it was cold — we were at an altitude of over 12,500 ft. above sea level, higher than Cusco by about 1,500 ft. — and so he came along. 

A taxi took us to the hostel, not far from Puno’s Plaza das Armas where we got a double bed room — but not before the guy from the terminal tried to sell us on a tour around Lake Titicaca to leave just four hours later that morning.  I turned him down, but the Australian had limited time and signed right up.

We checked into our decent hostel room with a private bath and got ready to just pass out in our respective beds. 

“I’m Erik by the way,” I finally introduced myself.

“Dave.”

As Dave and I went to sleep, there was creaking coming from the bed on the floor above us that went really slow and then really fast.  The guys up there must have been having sex — or perhaps were just really excited to have a new rain jacket.



ATTENTION NEW USERS SINCE DECEMBER 14, 2003:  All the sections of TheGlobalTrip.com should be accessible now.  Make sure you check out the photo gallery, videos and that “Would You” slideshow that everyone seems to rave about.






Next entry: Bargain Hunter: Puno

Previous entry: New Year, New Adventure




Commenting is not available in this channel entry.

Comments for “My First Stolen Item”

  • Hopefully it won’t rain any time soon wink I think we’re online at the same time… but as it is 4 am here in Tokyo, I’m heading off to bed. I was doing blog catch up too.  smile

    Posted by Liz  on  01/02  at  06:04 PM


  • I’m glad you haven’t gotten careless regarding the as-of-yet-unnamed-backpack. A rainjacket is a loss, but not irreplacable. You spent the last week in some beautiful places… I spent a week home from work visiting friends and sitting on my butt. Not that I’m complaining, mind you. Just comparing. I got my copy of “Hyenas Laughed” for xmas and promptly skipped ahead to the Stevie Wonder article. I still laugh when I read it. I’m sending your blog-link to friends in Ireland and NZ, hopefully they’ll spread the word even further. BTW, did rewriting a xmas tune earn me a postcard?

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  07:41 PM


  • is it me, or is there just a Plaza das Armas in every town? hahaha…that’s cool…

    I hope it rains on your foolish boy! (insert evil laugh)...j/k

    Can’t wait for the Lake Titicaca pics!

    WHEAT: if LP ever gives you those taps…call me up…i’ll bring the new castle…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  07:52 PM


  • My website is nothing as extravagant as yours—especially trip wise.  But I did add you on my links page. 

    My site is more for women, but since I did read that you wore a bra once—you’re cool!

    Posted by ChristyW  on  01/02  at  08:04 PM


  • dude, that sucks. i hope that wasn’t an expensive rain jacket. but better a rain jacket than your camera or laptop. and markyt is right, it seems like there is a plaza de armas in every town. what does that mean? armas = main? kind of like how there is a main street in every town here in u.s.?

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  09:56 PM


  • Hey gang, I’ll be staying with a host family on one of the islands in Lake Titicaca—hehe, I said “titty”—putting me NIZ for a couple of days…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  11:23 PM


  • ALICE:  Yes, there is a Plaza das Armas in every town—I think it means plaza of the arms, as in weapons…  Lima changed their Plaza das Armas to the name Plaza Mayor (Main Plaza)...maybe they didn’t want to sound so violent…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  11:25 PM


  • CHRISTYW:  Hey there, and welcome to The Fellowship of The Blog…  glad you enjoyed my little bra stunt in Montreal…

    Hang tight, the navigation to the other parts of the site will be up and running as soon as markyt can upload the files I just sent him…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  11:27 PM


  • MARKYT:  Post a note to The Fellowship when everything is up and QA’d… Thanks!

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  11:28 PM


  • CHRISTY:  Xmas song for postcard, of course!  But I don’t think I ever got your address… as it stands, I only have 8 addresses in my postcard mailing list…  Those of you whom I owe a postcard, email me your postal address…  The next batch will come from Titicaca…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  11:30 PM


  • you better get a kick ass alpaca sweater in puno

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/02  at  11:45 PM


  • MARKYT:  All the files are up and check out with help from Alice.  QA it if you can, and alert the troops when it’s all good.

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  01:02 AM


  • ALICE:  Thanks for your help…postcards from titicaca to come!

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  01:02 AM


  • ALL:  The navigation to the other sections of TheGlobalTrip.com should be working now…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  01:07 AM


  • ERIK: you need to update the blog main index drop down for the interactive itinenary….it loads to tgt.com main index….

    the files sent to my yahoo say it has a virus and can’t be extracted…but i can get if i foward to work account…

    if all the files are up thanks to Alice, than everything is tranquilo, tranquilo minus the above mentioned broken link…

    go get a haircut you hobbit…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  02:37 AM


  • I was laughing along with my classmates during the geography bee. My teacher said if you think the name Wanabeque sounds funny then you’re crazy last year she said she had to teach about Lake Titicaca!

    —Mike

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  03:55 AM


  • We just want to greet you a HAPPY NEW YEAR and good luck to the new year!

    From the following families:
    Rivera
    Trinidad
    Brady

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  04:00 AM


  • We just want to greet you a HAPPY NEW YEAR and good luck to the new year!

    From the following families:
    Rivera
    Trinidad
    Brady

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  04:00 AM


  • We just want to greet you a HAPPY NEW YEAR and good luck to the new year!

    From the following families:
    Rivera
    Trinidad
    Brady

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  04:01 AM


  • We just want to greet you a HAPPY NEW YEAR and good luck to the new year!

    From the following families:
    Rivera
    Trinidad
    Brady

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  04:01 AM


  • Hi Erik

    I am in Puno staying at Hostal Los Uros - where abouts are you and when do you leave for the islands?

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  05:27 PM


  • Erik, I just want to reiterate how I felt about your day 74 blog entry. I loved how you blended two new-years-eve tales into one of the most inspirational accounts I have ever read. And I?m not just saying this because I got a shoutout, which by the way was a very nice touch.

    I enjoyed your entry so much; I was literally in awe after I read it. Thank you!

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  11:20 PM


  • I mean day 73: Decisions.

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/03  at  11:22 PM


  • Sucks dude…thus far throughout all of my travels the only thing I’ve had stolen was some deoderant…and in that case, I wasn’t that bothered by it. I guess whomever took it SMELLED! grin

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  02:32 AM


  • LP hurry up w/ those tapes
    otherwise markyt and i will be at mcann’s. 

    rik, hook me up w/ some andean
    50cent remixes

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  04:05 AM


  • Happy New Year!! Sorry about your jacket. First of the last 8 episodes of Sex in the City was on last night….I didn’t like it. Great picts. Glad you had a friend for New Year’s!

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  12:38 PM


  • You went to Los Perros (last week)  in Cusco, cool!  I loved that you got the little band to play the village people.  I think I saw that exact same band, they alternated with a little singer girl at Chez Maggie.  You picked a GREAT way to ring in the new year.  I’m telling everyone about your blog.  It’s so entertaining.

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  03:35 PM


  • Hi Eric,

    Happy New Year a few days late.

    It is funny that you mentioned “Cyndi Lauper’s - Goonies are Good Enough” because I just saw LOTR: TROTK and I think Sloth plays an Orc General.

    Anybody else notice the resemblance?

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  08:59 PM


  • MICHAEL J. RIVERA:  Tell your classmates this:  Lake Titicaca is on the boundary of Peru and Bolivia…  People say the Peruvian side is the “titty” side and the Bolivian side is the “caca” side.  haha

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  09:58 PM


  • MICHAEL J. RIVERA:  Tell your classmates this:  Lake Titicaca is on the boundary of Peru and Bolivia…  People say the Peruvian side is the “titty” side and the Bolivian side is the “caca” side.  haha

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  09:58 PM


  • TO ALL USERS: currently Network Solutions sucks a FAT ONE (biggest one if 4 counties)...

    http://www.theglobaltrip.com for no reason is currently not redirecting correctly, but should be begin working within 24 hours…

    I apologize for the inconvenience (Network Solutions could care less)...

    all we want is tranquilo, tranquilo…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  10:09 PM


  • ALL:  Hey gang, I’m back from the NIZ…  I have to play Blog catch up, but I’m still a little under the weather… ran a major fever on the islands of Titicaca from the altitude…  I’m off to Bolivia tomorrow, hopefully the latest entries will be up then, with new characters from Chicago, Norway, Denmark and of course, Peru!

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  10:23 PM


  • LARA:  Hey, I just got back from a 2-day tour of the islands… it’s 6:30 on the 5th of Jan right now, I’m back in Puno… I’m heading off to La Paz tomorrow, but I’ll try and track you down tonight…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  10:26 PM


  • HEIDI:  Make sure you take a sand buggy out on the dunes of Huaca China… I think the trek up the dunes is a lot more tiring than at Colca…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/04  at  10:30 PM


  • LARA:  Guess I missed you… the hostel desk guy said you were off to Copacabana for the day…  Perhaps our paths will cross in Bolivia…

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/05  at  12:58 AM


  • ERIK - Just finished reading the last 5 or so entries - and I have to agree that day 73 was the best one yet - loved the town telephone play-by-play too. Your writing keeps getting better and better all the time - keep it up!

    I know you’re kind of travelling by the seat of your pants, but do you have some kind of loose itinerary posted on your site somewhere? I seem to remember seeing a map but now i can’t find it. Liza and I are planning to go to hit South East Asia some time this summer and I couldn’t remember if that coincides with your plans at all.

    Pictures from the new years canyon hike were stunning - and now you’re staying on an island on Lake Titicaca?! Wow. How do you find all these places?

    MARKYT - You’re not missing much on those kids-pretending-to-read-bad-videos - they’re entertaining for about 2 minutes, then they just make you angry.

    WARREN - that was DEFINATELY Sloth in LOTR. And don’t forget - Mikey was in the movie too! And Im pretty sure I saw one of those trolls doin’ the Truffle Shuffle.

    Posted by dunlavey  on  01/05  at  04:57 AM


  • ERIK - never mind - just found the interactive itinerary map in the menu. duh

    Posted by dunlavey  on  01/05  at  05:08 AM


  • Three and a half hours and nineteen blog entries later, I have finally caught up!
    I just wanted to let you know you have another lurking-non-commenting regular reader out there.
    I’ve really enjoyed your blog and will continue reading.  Keep up the good work.
    GOD bless.
    - Alyson, NJ

    Posted by Alyson  on  01/05  at  08:33 AM


  • Erik, I just found a great quote by Tolkien that seems to be appropriate… “Not all who wander are lost.” Sounds to me after reading your entry for day 73, you wander because you’ve found something.

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/05  at  03:40 PM


  • TO ALL USERS: http://www.theglobaltrip.com is back up and working correctly…..

    DUNLEAVY: how bout just sending over the first 2 min clips of all the videos?  hahahaha

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/05  at  04:31 PM


  • ERIK: iPod Mini just unveiled at MacWorld…..

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/05  at  06:13 PM


  • glad to hear that it was just the rain coat… where was your “hey, i’m one of YOU, plastic bag…” next time. btw, robin is back from her trip as well. I haven’t seen any pictures yet :(

    has anyone been to costa rica? i’m planning a trip in Feb… any suggestions for a Corporate America ONE WEEK trip?

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/05  at  09:19 PM


  • ALYSON:  Thanks for speaking up, great to hear from you!  Glad you like The Blog…spread the word!

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/05  at  09:53 PM


  • DUNLAVEY:  Thanks!  Yeah, my writing evolves yet again…it goes up and down, but gets better each time I suppose—just like comics, huh?

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/05  at  09:55 PM


back to top of page


SHARE THIS TRAVEL DISPATCH:


Follow The Global Trip on Twitter
Follow The Global Trip in Instagram
Become a TGT Fan on Facebook
Subscribe to the RSS Feed



This blog post is one of over 500 travel dispatches from the trip blog, "The Global Trip 2004: Sixteen Months Around The World (Or Until Money Runs Out, Whichever Comes First)," originally hosted by BootsnAll.com. It chronicled a trip around the world from October 2003 to March 2005, which encompassed travel through thirty-seven countries in North America, South America, Africa, Europe, and Asia. It was this blog that "started it all," where Erik evolved and honed his style of travel blogging — it starts to come into focus around the time he arrives in Africa.

Praised and recommended by USA Today, RickSteves.com, and readers of BootsnAll and Lonely Planet's Thorn Tree, The Global Trip blog was selected by the editors of PC Magazine for the "Top 100 Sites You Didn't Know You Couldn't Live Without" (in the travel category) in 2005.


Next entry:
Bargain Hunter: Puno

Previous entry:
New Year, New Adventure




THE GLOBAL TRIP GLOSSARY

Confused at some of the jargon that's developed with this blog and its readers over the years? Here's what they mean:

BFFN: acronym for "Best Friend For Now"; a friend made on the road, who will share travel experiences for the time being, only to part ways and lose touch with

The Big Trip: the original sixteen month around-the-world trip that started it all, spanning 37 countries in 5 continents over 503 days (October 2003–March 2005)

NIZ: acronym for "No Internet Zone"; a place where there is little to no Internet access, thus preventing dispatches from being posted.

SBR: acronym for "Silent Blog Reader"; a person who has regularly followed The Global Trip blog for years without ever commenting or making his/her presence known to the rest of the reading community. (Breaking this silence by commenting is encouraged.)

Stupid o'clock: any time of the early morning that you have to wake up to catch a train, bus, plane, or tour. Usually any time before 6 a.m. is automatically “stupid o’clock.”

The Trinidad Show: a nickname of The Global Trip blog, used particularly by travelers that have been written about, who are self-aware that they have become "characters" in a long-running story — like characters in the Jim Carrey movie, The Truman Show.

WHMMR: acronym for "Western Hemisphere Monday Morning Rush"; an unofficial deadline to get new content up by a Monday morning, in time for readers in the western hemisphere (i.e. the majority North American audience) heading back to their computers.

1981ers: people born after 1981. Originally, this was to designate groups of young backpackers fresh out of school, many of which were loud, boorish and/or annoying. However, time has passed and 1981ers have matured and have been quite pleasant to travel with. The term still refers to young annoying backpackers, regardless of year — I guess you could call them "1991ers" in 2013 — young, entitled millennials on the road these days, essentially.




Spelling or grammar error? A picture not loading properly? Help keep this blog as good as it can be by reporting bugs.

The views and opinions written on The Global Trip blog are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the official views and opinions of the any affiliated publications.
All written and photographic content is copyright 2002-2014 by Erik R. Trinidad (unless otherwise noted). "The Global Trip" and "swirl ball" logos are service marks of Erik R. Trinidad.
TheGlobalTrip.com v.3.6 is powered by Expression Engine v2.8.1