Peruvian Independence Day, Moquegua
I know if you’re on this page, you probably want to read about my Arequipa hostel experience. But, before I get to that, I just wanted to share a couple photos from celebrating Peruvian Independence Day in Moquegua.
We ate, we drank, and we partied. It was a phenomenal day!
Staying in an Arequipa Hostel
I headed back to Arequipa a couple days after this. I stayed in a hostel the night before my flight because I had to be at the airport between 5 and 5:30AM and did not want to take the 4 hour bus up that late at night/early in the morning. The hostel I stayed at was called Friendly AQP and was less than a 10 minute walk from the main Plaza.
Everyone was super nice and there were English speaking staff. It was fairly loud at night, though I assume this is probably the case with most hostels. I sprung for a private room (there were also dorm style rooms), because I knew I had to be up early and would be traveling for pretty much two days, so I wanted to be sure I would get some decent sleep. I believe it cost 55 soles for the private, or about 17 USD. The dorm rooms were significantly cheaper.
And here comes the worst part of the experience...
I tried to hail two cabs, both empty, but got passed up. I finally got the third cab I hailed to finally pick me up.
On our way to the airport, a man ran into the street and tried to stop our car (and we almost hit him in the process). He was yelling at us, but I didn’t really understand about what until I looked where he was pointing. I saw two big guys kicking another guy who was curled in a fetal position on the ground. I mean, they were really kicking him hard. My cab driver yelled at me to lock my doors, and I instinctively dropped down below window level, so I couldn’t be seen. My cab driver just gunned it to the airport.
I felt really, really sick about this. I wish we could’ve helped. I wish that the cab driver had called the police or that I knew what number to call to reach the police (and that I knew enough Spanish to explain what was happening). I know that this violence doesn’t just happen in Peru, it happens everywhere. But this was the first time I had seen it up close, and in real life. And I guess it really just hit me that people are capable of things like this. So, please, just be safe and take care of yourselves, especially when you are in a country you know very little about.