I am so proud of all the ladies who rose to the challenge with style and class and humility and certainly impressed everyone here – enforcing the fact that Canadians are the coolest people ever.

All the awesome details of this exciting day can be found in my report here. In the meantime, I leave you with some random musings about this interesting country:

  • In order to conserve energy and save the planet (or possibly just to save money), to get the lights to work in your hotel room you have to insert your room card. When you take it with you when you leave the room, the power is shut off. Brilliant!
  • It is really chilly and damp here. We were warned, but of course I thought ‘Hah! You don’t know the meaning of cold. I’m Canadian…’ and I didn’t bring enough warm clothes. I guess I will just layer everything I have, every day.
  • If something gets wet, like your running shoes, they will stay wet for a week because of the humidity. Maybe longer.
  • Breakfast is always a surprise. While the more pedestrian scrambled eggs are always available, there are other meaty treats such as stir-fried steak with veggies and chicharrónes, which are delicious nuggets of fried pork belly. These, plus other unidentified meat substances I have seen here, make me recall the words of the late, great Anthony Bourdain, who said about good food, “It’s about sodium-loaded pork fat, stinky triple-cream cheeses, the tender thymus glands and distended livers of young animals. It’s about danger risking the dark, bacterial forces of beef, chicken, cheese, and shellfish. Your first two hundred and seven Wellfleet oysters may transport you to a state of rapture, but your two hundred and eighth may send you to bed with the sweats, chills, and vomits.”
  • I included that last part because a couple of photographers here did indeed ignore rule #1 in Peru: Never eat the ceviche after noon. They suffered a nasty bout of food poisoning
  • At the equestrian park, there are volunteers every few yards and all of them will greet you warmly. It is not unusual to reply to “buenas tardes” 300 times in an afternoon.
  • There are some strange mountains near the venue that look post-apocalyptic; nothing grows on them and they are covered with shale and rocks and sand and look like a landslide waiting to happen. Nobody seems to know the names of this mountains either.
  • I am here for 16 days and do not own 16 pairs of ‘good’ underwear. Does anyone?