There was an error in this gadget

Join This Site

Photos of Peru

www.flickr.com
marcomendoza136's items Go to marcomendoza136's photostream

Labels

10 reasons you should never get a job (1) 2010 (1) 28 de julio (1) about me (1) abroad (1) addiction (1) adventure (1) afro-peruvian (7) aguas calientes (1) aji (1) alcohol (10) amazon (1) amazon river (2) america (2) andean (1) animal house (1) animation (14) anthony bourdain (1) architecture (1) argentina (1) arroz chaufa (1) art (6) articles (2) asuncion (1) attraction (2) Av. Abancay (1) Av. Grau (2) Av. Sucre (1) aviacion (1) B/W (1) bar (4) barranco (11) bars (6) beer (9) birthday (1) blogs (4) blood donation (1) blues (1) bodies (1) box (1) boxing (1) breasts (1) breña (7) brenden fraser (1) caldo de gallina (1) callao (7) camera (2) canon powershot (1) capitol (1) caqueta (2) cartoons (10) castañeda (1) castle (1) cat (1) catholic (1) causa (1) celebrity (1) centro comercial (1) cercado de lima (20) cerro san cristobal (1) ceviche (2) chan (1) chan chan (1) Chancay (1) channel frederator (1) charitable organization (1) Chase Jarvis (1) chicarron (1) chiclayo (2) chilcano de pisco (1) chile (1) chorrillos (14) chosica (2) christmas (3) church (1) churro (1) cliff (1) clinic (1) closeup (1) clubs (1) coca leaves (1) cocaine (1) colbert report (1) colectivo (1) comas (2) combi (2) commitment (1) consulate (1) cooking/baking (1) cops (1) country (3) crack (1) crema de rocoto (1) crime (2) criolla (2) criollo (3) cuisine (3) culture (21) cumbia (1) cusco (9) cuzco (3) d80 (1) dancing (3) daniel zamalloa (1) darwin (1) dead (1) death (1) dia de la cancion criolla (1) diego maradona (1) digg (1) digital camera (2) digital photography (34) doña pepa (1) downtown lima (20) drugs (2) DSLR (1) embassy (2) english (3) entertainment (2) eva ayllon (1) event (7) exhibit (2) experiment (1) family (1) fear (1) festival (1) FIFA (1) film (1) fires (1) Flickr (2) folklore (1) folkloric (3) food (24) football (1) fraternity (1) fresh cheese (1) friday (2) fried food (4) funny (1) futbol (2) gambling (1) gary allen (1) George Jones (1) gian marco (1) girlfriend (1) gold (1) government (1) guard (1) guest writer (5) guides (3) halloween (2) harrison ford (1) hematology (1) history (10) holiday (5) hospital (1) hotel (2) Huachipa (1) Huaylas (2) humor (2) Ica (1) incas (2) information (6) infrared (1) inspiration (2) internet (6) inti aperture (1) investigation (2) iquitos (1) iso (1) jazz (1) jesus (1) jesus maria (2) jiron de la union (2) Kanye West (1) karaoke (1) kina malpartida (1) king of pop (1) la libertad (1) la merced (1) la parada (1) la victoria (2) lambayeque (1) leoncio prado (1) life (1) lima (77) limon (1) Lince (3) los angeles (1) love (2) Machu Picchu (8) Magdalena del Mar (1) malvinas (1) marijuana (1) marriage (1) megaport project (1) mercado central (3) mercados (1) michael jackson (1) military (1) mining (1) miraflores (11) money (1) movie (2) mt. hood (1) mt. putucusi (1) music (16) musica (2) national anthem (1) news (28) night (1) nightlife (10) nightvision. flash (1) nikon (1) Obama (1) off-topic (48) oregon (7) Panamericana (2) papa a la huancaina (1) paraguay (1) party (7) patrick swayze (1) peña (2) peppers (1) peru (124) peruvian (3) peruvian food (24) peruvian music (2) Petit Thours (1) phi delta theta (2) photographer (16) photography (55) pisco (1) Plaza Bolognesi (2) Plaza de Armas (1) PNP (2) police officer (1) politics (4) pornography (1) portland (7) pro (1) psychology (1) pueblo libre (2) queso fresco (1) radio (2) random (72) rant (8) recipe (1) relationships (1) religion (2) repsol (1) resources (2) review (12) ricardo palma (1) rimac (2) rock (1) ruins (2) Rustica (2) salsa (1) san borja (1) san felipe (1) san isidro (3) San Juan de Lurigancho (1) san lorenzo island (1) San Martin (1) san martin de porres (3) santa anita (1) saturday morning cartoons (13) science (1) security (1) serenazgo (2) sex (2) shopping (1) shutter speed (1) siesta (1) sleepy (1) snacks (1) soccer (3) spain (1) sports (2) stained glass (1) stephen colbert (1) story (1) street vendor (1) streets (2) Tacna (1) taxi (2) technology (3) texas (1) theives (1) thunderbird (1) time exposure (1) time lapse video (4) tocosh (1) tourism (5) traffic (3) transportation (3) travel (20) travel guides (6) traveling (2) trees (1) tribute (1) tripod (1) trujillo (2) underconstruction (1) urban (1) uruguay (1) USA (4) uv (1) ventanilla (1) veterans day (1) via expresa (1) video (29) violinist (1) Voce (1) Washington DC (1) watchman (1) websites (2) white horse (2) woody harrelson (1) workin in peru (1) working in peru (2) world (1) world cup (1) yuquita (1) zambo cavero (1) zdenka (1)

Lima's Shoe-shiners

Posted by Marco Antonio Mendoza Sunday, June 27, 2010

In a relatively poor country with a centralized capital like Lima (almost half of the countries population resides within Lima) it isn't uncommon to encounter several forms of what I call the micro-economy.  The micro-economy consist of many different forms of ambulantes (street vendors who are usually unlicensed by the city), shoe-shiners, beggars, car-washers, etc. all of whom make up this very visible niche.  These individuals make up a large quantity of the cities population and are common in many other countries as well, mostly visible in third world countries or developing nation (the more PC term).

Living in Lima as a photographer, not to mention working in Lima as a teacher has given me the opportunity to travel all over this monstrous metropolis and one thing I run into more often than not are shoe-shiners.  Once a job only held by young children as a summer gig or on the side to earn a bit of money, now is operated by men of all ages.  A job that used to be common in the US several decades ago has all but vanished from the street scene (shoe-shiners can be still found in some of the larger cities like LA), but shoeshine boys remain a common site in many countries all over the world.  In the US most remaining shoeshine businesses have been moved indoors and off the streets as cities have worked to reduce the number of street vendors in an effort to maintain the aesthetic appeal of their city streets, a task which has been nearly an uphill battle for municipal authorities in Lima.  An article written by the SFGate.com highlights the success of one homeless shoe-shiner who fell under opposition by the Department of Public Works who has shut down his operations until he can purchase a permit.  In Peru the shoeshine boy is often looked down upon by society, even more so when it isn't a child working the position.  While the job doesn't bring in a suitable salary for some it is more than enough to put food on the table for their families.  Interestingly enough some of Latin America's most well known and respected politicians and presidents like Peru's very own former president Alejandro Toledo.  The US also has a few politicians, musicians, and historical figures who also took up the trade when they were young.  Wikipedia has a short article on shoe-shiners which has the a list of famous people who have once held the position. 

In Lima the shoe-shiner can be found virtually anywhere in the city but tends to be more concentrated in places like Downtown Lima/city center, Miraflores, San Isidro, and Callao.  When it comes to such a profession the one thing that matters the most is location, location, location, and these guys pick the most populated and trafficked areas in the city to set up shop.  In many countries like the US and India permits are required for shoe-shiners to operate and in Lima some larger shiners operate under a license/permit from the city especially since their large booths tend to take up a lot of space and aren't as mobile as the smaller compact shoeshine box that others lug around all day. 

However you measure up the work of a shoeshine boy it is hard to ignore their iconic roll in the culture of cities everywhere.  It will definitely be a long time before the shoe-shiner becomes extinct as their niche in the urban market remains strong.  Where their is a need there is a customer, and in a desert central city like Lima the demand is high!

0 comments

Welcome To Inti Aperture!



A travel blog about living abroad in Lima, Peru and my travels to cities like Cuzco and Machu Picchu. Inti Aperture is a blog about travel, Peruvian food, culture, adventure, jobs, tourism, travel, news, teaching English, photography, and living abroad, making it a perfect resource for the traveling expat.
Visit Peru!





Bienvenidos!


Un buen lugar para practicar ingles. Articulos sobre Peru, en ingles y escritos por un Americano viviendo en Lima. Todo lo que tu quieres saber sobre Peru en un solo sitio: experiencias, historias, recommendaciones de restaurantes, bares, y clubs, videos, consejos, recursos, guías de turismo, fotos de Peru, comidas tipicos del Peru, cultural Peruano, noticias de Peru, lugares y destinos turisticos, viajes en Peru, hasta SEXO....bueno todo menos eso... :)



Follow This Blog

Recent Posts About Peru

Visitors To The Site