It's midnight. We tell the the cab driver we just need a quickie hotel, a bed to sleep in until the next bus at 6am. Perhaps quickie was the wrong word. He tells us he knows just the place and whisks us away while persistently inquiring if we would like to accompany him for a cerveza. No. He drops us off beside the highway outside a dark building lit only by the absinthe green sign flickering "hotel" into the night. Cerveza? Pisco? No? Ok. One more thing. Make sure tell girl you need only until 5am. Important.
The girl is adamant: 5 am on the dot. One minute after and we get charged full day rate. Shit. We're in a sex hotel. Our room has a big window with a view of the hallway. Another smaller one opens into a type of outdoor air shaft we share with 15 other rooms. Can't wait. Someone has used the bed blanket to put out a pack of cigarettes, left his toothbrush in the shower, and forgot his hair on the pillow. It's smells like wet concrete and immitation Febreeze. But we are exhausted and at least the toilet has a seat. Mercifully there is no noise. We've slept on a bench, we sure as hell can sleep on top of a sheet.
We wake at 4am to the official sex hotel soundtrack above us and struggle to fall back asleep. It's pretty gross and we mumble an agreement: never again. Heeding the receptionist's warning we make it downstairs just before 5 and hail a cab next to the woman from upstairs. Good thing she made check-out.
Bleary eyed and surprisingly hungry we scarf down a quick egg and palta on toast at the terminal then sit outside watching the sun come up and waiting for our bus to board. Though we'd absolutely never go back to the green sex hotel, or any rent-by-the-hour for that matter, we cannot regret the night; for we've stayed true to our goal. On the dirty roads you sleep where the locals sleep and always try anything once.