Monday, December 11, 2006

To Market, To Market

Recently we needed to purchase a few Christmas presents and some things for the house. We had special ordered a couple of things for Christmas and when we went to pick them up passed by a mercado (market). These mercados are everywhere in Peru and all over Lima. There are both indoor and outdoor and are characterized by row upon row of various stalls selling just about anything imaginable. There are a couple of massives mercados in Central Lima that we have visited a few times, but there are a lot of safety concerns with these places so we don't go all that often, at least not with Caleb -- he's too much of a distraction and an easy target since he kind of sticks out. This market however, was much smaller and seemed completely manageable.

Our shopping list was as follows:

Something to put the toilet paper in in the guest bathroom
Something decorative for the other guest bathroom
Something for Mom
dish drain
can opener (ours rusted on the boat from Miami)
garbage bags (you can only buy them in packages of 10 so we buy these often)
stocking stuffers for Caleb
ironing board

Not surprisingly, we found everything on our list at this mercado. They are like Peruvian Wal-Marts, one stop shopping for all your holiday and everyday needs. We choose not to purchase the iron there in case it didn't work and we needed to return it, but otherwise got everything else. In addition, we could have bought fruit, vegetables, meat, shoes, clothes, candy (both pre-packaged and in bulk), nuts, grains, spices, plastic and styrofoam containers in every conceivable shape and size, electronics, pirated DVDs (at this point, I really have no idea where to buy non-pirated DVDs -- not having a Best Buy here has really curbed our acquisition of movies), toys, jewelry, personal care products etc. And, despite being chastised up and down every aisle for not dressing Caleb warmly enough (notice below he is not wearing shoes, or socks, or a hat, or a coat, or a snowsuit -- we actually saw babies in this market wearing snowsuits) it was a very successful outing.

Notice the potatoes, there were probably over 20 varieties available

Next time we'll have to buy one of those tuxedos for Caleb



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