Let’s get one thing straight: Lima Peru is amazing. From the smiling people to the mouth-watering food (oh the food), this city is bustling with life and more importantly, hope.
Now you might be asking yourself, why is this so, Nina? To fully understand that, we have to travel back a few months. This past August, I was chosen to represent the American Chemical Society at the United Nations International Conference on Climate Change. This is a chance for countries around the world to discuss, negotiate, and pledge to take better care of the environment.
Fast-forward four months through two very long plane rides, a few strange encounters at the airport, and a harrowing taxi ride, I am here in Lima, Peru traveling alone and abroad for the first time.
This trip has been full of new and exciting opportunities and I have only been here two days! Already, I toured San Francisco Cathedral, which was built in 1673 and has deep, dark, and dizzying catacombs full of bones and secrets. I laughed as three other girls and I crammed into the back of a taxi and tried to communicate with the driver who spoke no English. I stood outside the imperial castle, looking on at stoic and regal guards. I waded into the waves of the Pacific Ocean with other students, squealing at the frigid temperature.
Most importantly, I began to feel the excitement and energy of delegates, observers, and students uniting from every corner of the globe to discuss one of the most important issues of our generation: climate change.
I am going to be completely honest with you dear reader, I am a normal person. I never thought that I would be traveling around the world and actually have a voice in the global conversation. If I can do it, so can you.
To me, Lima represents the hope of the future. As roughly, 190 countries unite to accomplish an international agreement to take care of the environment, make your voice known. I know it seems like shouting into the void, but believe me, that cannot be farther from the truth. I am just a girl from the suburbs of Chicago, yet one opportunity has propelled me into one of the most thriving cities in the world. Join me on my journey, be a part of the excitement.