Images of Lima

Since I have a lot of time on my hands I have taken quite a few photos in Lima. Here are some of the best ones.

I spent a good few hours in the National Museum, which documents the myriad of cultures that have lived in Peru over the years. The Incas were just the last of the lot, but there were dozens of them, going back to 5000 BC. There were the Chavín, Moche, Paracas, Wari, Nazca, Chimu, and Tiahuanaco, to name a few. They all eventually died off or got absorbed into other cultures.

I found the Nazca culture particularly interesting. These were the folks who made the lines in desert which I describe in one of my previous posts. They were also accomplished artists and potters. Here is some of their stuff.  

Here´s a few more interesting shots from the museum.

Lima borders the Pacific Ocean. Here is a view of the coast.

I went out Saturday night to see the Lima nightlife. Stopping in an Irish bar (but without Irish beer) I chatted with some of the staff. They made an excellent pisco sour.

The main plaza in central Lima is the Plaza de Armas. This is where the guilty from the Spanish Inquisition were brought to be “saved” (read punished). There is a nice Cathedral and museum which contains the bones of Francisco Pizarro, who was assassinated in 1541.

Here are a few shots around the Plaza de Armas.

The Cathedral and inside:

Pizarro´s tomb

The ever-present police:

Across the Plaza

Some things are better left covered up.

Pizarro: murderer or good soldier?

I got to thinking about Pizarro at his tomb. A bloody end to a bloody legacy. I disliked him ever since elementary school, when I read how he captured the Inca leader Atahualpa and promised to free him after Atahualpa offered to pay a ransom of a room full of gold and two rooms full of silver. Atahualpa kept his promise. Pizarro did not. Atahualpa was executed in the Plaza de Armas.

Now, however, I see that Pizarro was just doing his job. If it wasn´t him it would have been someone else. The Inca were doomed no matter what. It may seem unfair that the indigenous people were overrun by the Europeans. And not only in Peru, but also the  so-called “native Americans” of North America (who were themselves immigrants actually), the Aztecs, the Australian Aborigines, the Maoris of New Zealand, and countless others.

But “fair” has nothing to do with it. That´s the natural progression of things. The earth evolves and species come and go. It´s futile and a waste of time to pass judgement on such events. Is it “unfair” that a meteor struck the earth 65 million years ago and wiped out the dinosaurs? No, that´s just what happened. As Shakespeare said, “nothing is either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” If cultures die out or species become extinct–including homo sapiens one day–that´s not a bad thing, it just is.

Any thoughts on that?