I like to ride my bike. When I am in Lima – I have a ride route that takes me along the coast and up to a national park at the southern tip of Chorrillos.
During the week, traffic is the main enemy. People, dogs, strollers, and bicycles are everywhere on the weekends and holidays and require a level of attention similar to dodging knives.
Riding along the Lima coast is magical, even with the stress of the constant vigilance of the many moving dangers. One can gain so much cultural and social interplay over being in a car or on foot. A bicycle is a sort of magic carpet ride. It is a more profound way for me to stay connected.
For a few years, we have organized a bike team for the boys at the Casa Girasoles. The group, called Girasoles Sanos or healthy sunflowers, is a therapeutic outlet for the boys and staff. A magical connection happens when the boys are out riding.
This week we are holding our first Gravel Camp in Ica. We have a group of volunteers coming from the United States, and we will spend six days riding, laughing, and connecting with the boys and staff from the seat of a bicycle. We have a full slate of adventure rides that take advantage of the hundreds of kilometers of gravel roads in and around Ica.
Following a well-deserved lunch and shower in the afternoons, our group will lead the boys through a series of bike maintenance workshops and wood block ink printing. The group has organized many activities to engage the boys and aid in their learning.
More than anything, this is a trip about connection. We will connect with the boys, ourselves, our environment, and the Peruvian culture. I will be posting updates – along with photos and videos – throughout the week.
Check out the HBI blog throughout this next week for more details on our first Gravel Adventure Camp.