Monday, December 6, 2010

I've found the source of the Converse

As the first in my series of things-I-have-to-do-before-I-leave for the summer, I took a solo trip to Polvos Azules today, Lima's black market. Let me ask you, what do you think of when I say that, black market? Dirty corners, backs of vans, dodgy men in overcoats? Me too. I mean, I'm pretty sure "black" implies "illegal," right?

But unexpectedly, Polvos Azules is the closest thing that I've seen here to a mall. It was a big multi-level concrete complex with the name printed in large right out there on one of the busiest street fronts in Lima. In fact, it even had escalators, which I think probably worked at one point. It was filled with little stores who apparently each choose one type of item and sell the heck out of it. There were separate stores lined with shoes or clothes or cds or luggage. They obviously rejected the department store model of mall. But they sell brand new brand name stuff, as far as I can tell. Only just... illegally, somehow.

Are you wondering right now, why don't the police come in and shut that operation down? Me too. I don't really have an answer for that.

My own trip was mostly to just check it out, but I also bought a ton of movies. Old favorites (like Grease), new favorites (like He's Just Not That into You), things I just want to see (like the Pianist), and Christmas movies for my family (like A Christmas Carol). And after a couple hours of testing them, I can proudly say that they almost all are in English.

And then of course I had to watch one, which ended up being Valentine's Day. Pretty good. Best part was Julia Roberts outtake in a limo at the end when someone asks her if she's ever shopped Rodeo Drive before and she says, "I did once actually. A big mistake. Big. HUGE."

I don't know if anyone gets my references, but they make me smile.

I got them to sign forms so I could put them in this blog, of course.

Peliculas=Movies...But I'm sure you already knew.

Have you eve seen so many different kinds of Converse? I HAVE! Every day. Everywhere.

Happy Monday, my lovely readers!!


  1. oh boy - I bet that was fun...

    Bonnie aka shopaholic

  2. Nice blog post. You're so lucky and I'm so jealous! I'm always thinking where the black market here in Ljubljana is but I still don't know (I probably never will). But you... you've been on the black market. I'm so jealous! =)