PotD: Miraflores en tu corazón

Sony A7RII : f/11@1000th : ISO 250 : EV -0.3 : FE 90mm f/2.8

This image of the Costa Verde below the Malecón in the wealthy district of Miraflores evokes a lot of childhood memories. Before heading off to school in England, I’d lived a carefree life in this part of Lima. Memories of sliding fast down the cliff face so as to stay ahead of the dislodged rocks coming up behind us; trying to hit crabs that clambered over the breakwaters with stones we gathered off the beach; the physical effort it took to climb back up the face, with the loose sand shifting beneath our feet and our sweaty palms clasping the few bits of vegetation that grew there as we cried out that we couldn’t go any further. When skateboards arrived on the scene, we switched to the safer option of taking the road that wound its way down to the sea, only having to deal with grazed knees and passing cars, maybe stopping first to take aim with an air rifle at the rats rummaging in the dumping grounds that had formed on several parts of the cliff.

The Malecón is very different now. Gone are the residential homes, replaced by high rise apartment blocks. The loose sands of the cliff face have been covered with a steel mesh, the rubbish long gone, and green creepers encouraged to grow on its surface, possibly in an attempt to provide a reason for the name Costa Verde. Neatly tended parks are interconnected with paths that invite an evening stroll. This particular photo was taken from a viewing point at the Larcomar shopping centre, a place that several ‘limeños’ had recommended I visit, for the experience, maybe a bit of lunch… I admit it looks impressive jutting out from the cliff face, offering superb views over the Pacific as well as the possibility to people watch. Many of the affluent middle class of Miraflores flock here to shop and dine. It reminds me a little of my experience at the Costanera Center in Santiago, Chile, another high end mall with all the usual international chain stores and restaurants that many Chileans had also suggested I check out. Personally, I don’t find shopping malls particularly pleasant but I can understand that they are also a statement of success.

I’m sure I’ll go on about my Lima experiences in further detail when I do the journal entry, I’m just excited about seeing it again after more than 30 years and this image brings it all flooding back. It seems that I still have ‘Miraflores en mi corazón!’. A lot has changed, much of it for the better, and the Malecón is a fine example of this.

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