Number of People with Nothing Better to Do

Friday, January 29, 2010

La Hora Peruana

One of the biggests frustrations here in Peru is La Hora Peruana (Peruvian Time). If you set an appointment, charla, meeting, etc. for a certain time, it will almost certainly start late, if it starts at all. I get it - it’s a lot more relaxed, tranquilo way of life and they’re not slaves to the clock like we are. But damn can it be frustrating! Things to do while waiting for your meeting – play Tetris on your cell phone (high score – >73,000), read a book, bullshit with other people waiting for their meeting to start, talk to someone about how hot it is, go back home & check emails & come back (sometimes 2 or 3 times), avoid looking at the woman breast feeding right in front of you, wonder what’s for lunch, look at the clouds (when available) and decide what kind of animal they look like, meditate, stare at the mountain across the valley, plan a vacation, call fellow Peace Corps Volunteers (they're probably waiting on something too), work on your dopey blog that no one reads anyway, say “f*ck it” and start on time.

One of my first assignments in Spanish class during training was to go out and interview people about what the Hora Peruana meant to them. Nearly all said it meant waiting and starting about 30 minutes to an hour after the scheduled time. One electrician I interviewed in the street replied very adamantly that the Hora Peruana means things start “en punto” (on the dot, right on time). Of course he had been ringing the doorbell of a house for about 15 minutes waiting for someone to show up for their appointment.

Maybe Peruvians would make good Cable Guys?


  1. " on your dopey blog that no one reads anyway."

    BS! I read it everytime there is a new article. And I'm sure everyone else does too!

  2. I read it all the time. Your job is better then my job. My job no mountain.

  3. I thought that was called "San Antonio time."
    Uh oh. My signature will say "Mamma Mae" which is my late grandmother's name - long story. Anyway, it is really me-Mike Cline

  4. Hola Beto, Blake is right. Your blogs allow us stiffs back in the states to live vicariously through you. Glad you cleared up the "Win" issue. I wondered about that but never asked. figured it was personal. Hope you get that Nazca mystery solved. Waiting to hear via blog what you find out.