Today was a practice/getting oriented day in Lima. I met up at 11 with Toni Novack from Florida who is playing in the 75s (and tearing it up). She’s staying across the street from the courts and had checked out what was going on at the tournament before I did (it helps that she’s an hour ahead of Lima time while I am 2 hours behind…Lima is on USA Central time right now).
I am staying in an apartment and prices here are very reasonable. After breakfast I decided to get some water and try to find some other items. What Google Maps said was a “supermarket” was a small convenience store…not one fruit or vegetable to be found but they had water and drinks…good enough for stop #1. Toni then told me that we could not get a court till 1pm, so we arranged to meet at 12:30 and I went back out to find the elusive fruits and vegetables. I walked about 800 meters with several turns to find a store which, though small did have both, so got my blueberries, carrots and more and headed back to unload before playing tennis.
The club is very nice, long and narrow between rows of tall apartment buildings…the entire club is not much wider than two tennis courts, but it is long and has a gym, indoor and outdoor pools, locker rooms and a busy restaurant, also a small pro shop.
We checked in and were told we now could not get a court till 2pm so went to Wong’s grocery store (more like a Target or Walmart with a grocery store). It was big, modern and had some interesting Peruvian foods, such as 20 or so kinds of potatoes, departments for fish, chicken, meat, bread, alcohol, charcuterie, butter, cheese, drinks and more. There were interesting fruits..lots of passion fruit, gooseberries, potatoes of all colors and shapes…just about everything.
Next stop was actual tennis at the club. The balls are regular duty Wilson balls (the ones with a green label, ie the cheap ones). The courts were nice, soft, red, not too heavy or dry.
After practice and a break, I walked back to Toni’s hotel and met up with Toni and her husband Michael. We had a nice dinner where we had a Peruvian specialty, a whole fish which was baked in a thick layer of salt, steaming the fish, then lit on fire (flambé), cracked open with a hammer, filleted and served. It was very tasty and served with some delicious rice. It was a nice end to a first day in Lima.
As for the tournament…communication should be better…I asked if I would start any later than the listed date of June 12…turns out no women play till at least Tuesday, and since I have a bye…not before Wednesday. Meanwhile, there’s lots more to explore here.