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I’m back in Peru after a full year on the road, eight months south of the equator and four in the US. Where has the time gone! I am happy to be back and settled for the winter. There have been some changes in the past year, though most are slight. I do notice the continued prosperity of Peru that stands in marked contrast to the civil unrest in neighboring Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, and Venezuela. Despite troubles elsewhere in Latin America, and Peru’s recent political turmoil that resulted in the Congress being dismissed, people are going about their lives, building another story on their home, shopping in the outdoor market and at the supermarket. Shops are busy, construction is underway at several places along the beach, and life is generally bustling. There’s a new Barranca sign on the hillside!

Jonathan has already been here for a month, and has reestablished contact with our friends and neighbors. We had a surprise visit from our colleague Alvaro Ruiz. It was good to catch up a bit. Jonathan has hosted Saturday lunch gatherings with local friends. It’s a chance to sit down and talk in addition to the occasional exchange of greetings in the street. There is always gossip, who is building what, whose family is coming to visit, who is in Lima, how everyone’s children are doing, new grandchildren born this year. So much news to keep up with.

Our annual round of home improvements has begun, with new plants in the patio and our pillow covers from New Zealand and Australia stuffed and deployed. We’re creating a system to circulate water from the well through the yard to fill the small pools and waterfalls that have been dry for several years. By recirculating the water we will be able to make the garden greener without letting any of the water get away. It’s a precious commodity here. Other plans are percolating as we gear up for the visit of our daughters and their spouses/fiancés over the holidays.

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