The locals, I know, exist on even less than I do. I see communities of square concrete blocks, corrugated metal roofs kept on with nothing but some rocks. The empty squares of hole-in-the-wall “windows” gape at me as I drive by. I wonder how the homes do when it rains. Electricity is rare; indoor plumbing unusual, climate control, unheard of — even in most hotels. People walk or take buses. Or don’t travel. The cost of gas for Peruvians is roughly the same as in the states — the price of gas is pegged to an international standard. But income isn’t. To own a car is a tremendous burden. The lines on people’s faces tell of lives much harder than my own. Stray dogs wander the streets; the spare energy to round them up and adopt them out or put them down — or neuter family animals that are cared for — just doesn’t exist.
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