I was walking back to my hotel from La Chonta restaurant in Pucallpa, Peru recently and noticed a glowing shrine in the back lot of a building. I stepped into the lot to take a closer look. It almost looked like a Voodoo or Santeria shrine. There was a venerated image with a heading La Diosa del Amor, the Goddess of Love. Candles were all around it and small offerings sat with them. A man came out from the backdoor of the building and saw me peering at the shrine.
“Las chicas encantan.” The girls love it.
“Las chicas?” I asked.
“Si, las chicas.” He pointed me into the doorway and pulled back a curtain to reveal the sleaziest strip club I had ever seen in my life (…and I’ve seen hundreds. That’s a joke. Thousands.). The room was so dark that you could barely see and there were bright red lights scattered about. The stage was empty and there didn’t seem to be anyone in the place except about a dozen girls in lingerie who were just lounging about on couches.
“Estan muy bonita,” he said as I walked out.
Cool shrine though.
Writer and photographer Nicholas Gill is the editor/publisher of New World Review. He lives in Lima, Peru and Brooklyn, New York. His work has appeared in publications such as the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, CondeNast Traveler, National Geographic Traveler, Afar, and Penthouse. Visit his personal website (nicholas-gill.com) for more information.