Villa Rica

After a few days in La Merced with Jose, we left for Villa Rica, another small town about an hour away. I decided to use my time in the truck to write about my trip, but as soon as I started writing, my stomach was feeling terrible once again. As I struggled to write my post, the sun started to sink behind the mountains and the air cooled off. My pain must have shown on my face because Jose asked me why I was so sad. I had to tell him that I didn’t feel good. Jose decided that I needed more granadias, a native fruit here in Peru, to cure my sickness. Jose swore that they were the best natural medicine for a stomachache, and on my first night in La Merced, he had made me about ten of them. We kept driving and soon enough through the darkness of the evening, I could make out a banner just like the one that welcomed us to La Merced except this one bore the name Villa Rica. As we drove through the small town, the first thing that I noticed was that many of the roads weren’t paved like they were in La Merced. Each bounce of the car made my stomach churn. I was thankful when Jose stopped the car at the nearest store to ask about granadias. They didn’t have any. Neither did the next. At the third or fourth store, we found some and I was ordered to start eating. The first granadia was almost painful to eat. By the second, I realized that the juice from the fruit was starting to rehydrate me. By the third, I had to admit that Jose really knew his native fruits. By the fourth, we were turning into the drive of La Finca Santa Rosa and I couldn’t wait to be reunited with Selena.

 

Here's the welcome sign to Villa Rica. We went back a few days later to take a picture.

Here's the welcome sign to Villa Rica. We went back a few days later to take a picture.

Looking down the main street.

Looking down the main street.

Here's the view of Villa Rica from above.

Here's the view of Villa Rica from above.

This is me in a bodeguita ("little store") with a Villa Kola, the classic "jungle" soda.

This is me in a bodeguita ("little store") with a Villa Kola, the classic "jungle" soda.

Here in the jungle, Villa Rica is known for it's production of coffee.

Here in the jungle, Villa Rica is known for it's production of coffee.

Posted on May 27, 2013 .