A Poem to Peru

Casey Thompson is a student at Kansas State University and an ISA Featured Photo Blogger. She is currently participating on a study + service-learning program with ISA in Cusco, Peru.

As I arrived in Cusco, Peru, I noticed right away,

That it was hard to breathe, even on the first day.

Because of the altitude, approximately ten thousand feet,

I would walk about a mile and feel completely beat.

A beautiful sunset greeted me in Peru!

When I got to my house, I met my host sister and mom,

Considering she was housing two Americans, she seemed completely calm.

I went to great her like they do in Peru,

With a kiss on the cheek and saying, “Hola, como estas tu?”

As I got settled, I got into a routine,

Breakfast, class, lunch, and dinner, as well as many things in between.

Many times when I went to class every day,

I would see seven or eight dogs who were astray.

They seemed well fed, as they were not thin,

But sadly, I could not pet them because they could have rabies or other diseases within.

Walking back from my classes, I have to cross a busy road,

With cars going by, none of them slow.

In the U.S. it is different in that the pedestrians go first,

But here, cars have the right-of-way which is the worst.

The beautiful view from my school building!

Returning to my house I learned quite soon,

That lunch is their main meal, and not always served at noon.

With food piled high and a plate so big,

one meal even contained guinea pig.

I fell in love with picarones while in Peru! Picarones are donuts made out of sweet potatoes.

Now here are some final lessons not to forget

If you come to Cusco, Peru so you do not need to fret:

The weather in Peru is one to take note.

In the winter time, I only need a light coat.

Also, not very many people have an internal heater,

They also measure in centimeters.

When visiting a Peruvian restaurant, the waiter will ask,

If you want water with or without gas.

And when you are done eating and you have time to kill,

Don’t forget to ask the waiter for the bill.

A very delicious pizza down at La Bodega 138 in La Plaza de Armas!

Also, never fret if you have to wait,

For a Peruvian who is arriving late.

They will almost never be on time,

But don’t worry, they will show up sometime.

Now that you know about Cusco, Peru,

I hope it is a place that you would like to come to.

And always remember my most important advice,

Never drink out of the tap, or you will pay the price.

I was in Cusco when they celebrated Corpus Cristi! There were lots of people, food, and fun!


This is a Quechuan woman we met on the first day in Cusco!


A beautiful rainbow over the Cathedral in La Plaza de Armas!

The world awaits…discover it.


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