Day 203: Iquitos
But there is still an honorary British Consul here. To find out more about the place, I seek him out at an address on Arica Street. It's a low, embattled frontage of two grey wooden doors squeezed tight by the smart new Telefonica Peru offices next door. A noisy tide of moto-carros - three-wheel taxis - ebbs and flows busily past. Press the bell beside a brass plaque which reads 'Consulado Britanico'. A small, neat, elderly man in blue sleeveless shirt with greying hair brushed carefully back from a pale, almost pasty face, answers the door. He introduces himself as Lewis Power, born seventy odd years ago to a French mother and Irish father. The consular office is in what was once the thriving warehouse of his father's import-export business and is now a dark and dusty shed more like the set of Steptoe and Son. There is a clutter of old wooden filing cabinets, weights, lifting chains, cables, engine cylinders, ledgers and trade directories nibbled by rats and mice - the rotting remains of half a century of commerce.
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