Mar 7 2009

Bye Bye Bolivia!

So it’s been a month since we’ve been out of Bolivia, and it’s been…well…a long time since I have blogged.

Bolivia flew by like you wouldn’t believe. We finished our time at El Camino halfway through February, and then did some work during Carnivale, the big festival (aka drunken street party) in South America where everyone drinks lots, arms themselves with pressurized soap suds, and/or paint and sprays each other. Due to that, I didn’t want to risk bringing my camera. We did some dramas on the street, and handed out “hangover remedies” that had an aspirin attached to a card that said “Esto es para tu dolor de cabeza….Jesus es para todos tus dolores!” (This is for your headache–Jesus is for all your pains)
After that we spent a week in La Paz, hanging out with backpackers in an uber cool hostel called “Loki”. La Paz is the highest capital city in the world at 12,000ft above sea level. The elevation definitely is an issue, as EVERYTHING is La Paz is on a hill. You have to stop every 5 minutes to catch your breath because of how thin the air is. It’s incredible beautiful though. We really enjoyed the city a lot. One of the highlights was visiting the Mecado de Brujas (Witches Market). A lot of the ladies selling things are called “cholitas”–part of an ethnic group in Bolivia. You can recognize them by their big bowler hats and full skirts. I got to take a picture of one of them after I bought this strange fossilized bug from her. (I’ve got to be honest–the only reason I bought the fossil was so I could take her picture) She very gladly posed for me, and later on whenever I would walk past she would call out “Photograph! Photograph!”
On the way back from Bolivia, Dave watched “James Bond: Quantum of Solace” on the flight. If you haven’t seen it, it’s actually set in Bolivia. Just so you know–Bolivia is nothing like how they portrayed it in the movie (for one thing–Bolivian Desert?! Are they talking about the sand dune outside of Santa Cruz? ;) There is no hot Bolivian desert like they showed in the movie. The Antiplano, where I guess they are trying to place it, is nowhere near hot. It’s 12,000ft above sea level, in the friggin’ Andes. It’s cold.) They also didn’t even film it in Bolivia. Go figure.