Back Stateside

Well, I arrived in the States a few days ago, so I’ve been really busy catching up with everyone and everything here. Of course I was very sad to leave Perú and all the people that I’ve grown so close to there. However, it was also really great to see my family and friends again. I took a redeye flight and it got delayed for four hours, so I didn’t end up leaving Lima until 2:30 in the morning. Here’s a photo from my plane just before we landed:

One thing that I’ve always really liked about arriving in the States after an international trip is Customs. I know that probably sounds strange at first because most people just think of it as a hassle, but I always feel such a rush of happiness to be home when the Customs officers say “welcome home” as I cross through this last part of my journey. I snapped this photo on my phone while I was leaving the airport. The poor quality is due to the fact that I was trying to balance four bags on an escalator while I took it:

Now it’s time to focus on getting ready to head back to Holy Cross to start my fourth and final year! I cannot believe that I’m already a senior in college. Anyways, this will be my last blog update (unless I remember something else that I can’t resist sharing).

I’d like to end with a thank you to Dr. Richard Matlak and the Holy Cross Student Grant Program for funding my experience and making it all possible, to the Holy Cross Web Communications department for allowing me to keep this blog, and to all my professors and mentors at Holy Cross who helped me develop this project and encouraged me throughout the whole process. Finally, I’d like to thank my family, and especially my parents, for their endless support, patience, concern, and love. My experience this summer has been one that I will never forget, and I am so glad that I will be able to look back on this blog in the future to remember my time in Lima. Thanks to all my readers as well for following me on my adventure. Besos para todos!

Final Weeks

Well, I’m down to just a few more days in Lima. I can’t believe my time is almost over. I just ordered my textbooks for the fall semester, so it’s really starting to sink in that it’s time to go back to the United States and start my senior year!

As promised, here are some photos from the tuberculosis lab that I work in:

Carlos on the microscope!
Centrifuge with cooling.
One of the biological safety cabinets.
The other biological safety cabinet.

Since TB is an airborne disease, we have to be really careful not to let air that’s in the lab get exchanged with air in other rooms of the building/outside air. So, we have to walk through a series of doors to get into the lab, and through a different path to exit the lab:

Also, if we want to pass samples or supplies between the different labs, this has to take place through a special chamber that exchanges the air before the cabinet is opened on the other side:

Finally, we could, under no circumstances short of a fire or earthquake, open the emergency exit doors:

I’ve also been trying enjoy my last few weekends in Perú. For example, I traveled with my host family mother, brother, and a family friend to a city called Huacho, which is a few miles North of Lima by car. We went there on July 28 to celebrate Peruvian Independence Day. We had a night lunch and then went for a row boat ride on the ocean; it was really beautiful!


One of the things I think I’ll miss the most when I leave Perú is the food! It is, by far, the most delicious food I’ve ever had in my life. Anyways, here’s an example of a typical market in Lima:

I guess that’s it! This will likely be my last post from Perú, but I do plan to do one once I settle back in in the States. Besos desde Perú!