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Beautiful Bolivia


Well the birthday dinner turned into one huge night. I was drinking a coctail called Welcome to the Jungle and let me tell you, it was strong. It was a real good night and everyone in the group had plenty to drink and eat. I somehow managed to lean in chocolate cake so in the morning when I woke up relised that I couldnt wear my pants. Feel sorry for the person who did our laundry in Sucre.

Our second day in La Paz saw us eat at a japanese restaraunt, I was a little skepticle since I dont eat sea food but I ended up getting a noodle and chicken dish which was quite nice. After lunch we went to the markets again and then had to pack and be ready to leave for the 6pm overnight bus. In some ways, staying out till 3am the night before was a sensible thing because the 12 hour bus ride flew and before I knew it I was in Sucre.

Sucre to date has been my favorite city. Its quite smaller than La Paz or Lima, around the same size as Cusco but with a better atmosphere. It was a real cruisy place and you felt safe where ever you walked. As our group was so tired from constant travel Raphael our guide decided a quite day was in order and booked us into this resort for the day. It was fantastic. It was done up really nice and was only about a 30 min drive from Sucre but felt all remote and peaceful. We had a BBQ lunch which consisted of sausages, steaks and salads. I however am on a salad free diet here after being sick in Cusco from eating lettuce and tomato. Still didnt help me as I got sick in the afternoon in Sucre.

Anyway getting back on track, after lunch some of us swam, some rested in hammocks and some of us played a local Bolivian game which is kind of like Botchi where you throw 12 coins at this bench like thing that has a frog in the middle. If you can get the coin into the frogs mouth you get 50 points. None of us managed to do that and even Raphael our tour guide has only managed that 3 times in his life time. Must be kinda like a hole in one in golf. I got totally addicted to the game and was playing it for like 4 hours.

At around 5.30pm we all got back on the bus and headed back to our hotel in Sucre. Now talk about nice hotels, this place we were staying in was the best to date. It was like a spanish mansion and the rooms were awesome. It was good to be back in a single room again of which I have been lucky most of the trip. I have only really shared one night in Lima, 1 for the homestay and the 2 nights in La Paz.

By the time I got back to the motel I was really starting to feel sick and had been to the toilet 9 times that day. Not really going to go into much detail about that but I didnt eat dinner and just had a relaxing night watching cable tv. The next day I was still really bad (yesterday) and after our day tour of Sucre, Raphael took me to the doc and I got prescribed anti biotics for an infection. I was struggling yesterday but still fought on because the afternoon was one of the things I was really looking forward to on this trip.

After visiting a few museums we had lunch, I didnt, wasnt hungry and then went to the market where we bought 300 bolivianos worth of food. Chocolate powder, milk, fruit, pastas etc and then Raphael took us to an orphanage in Sucre. This place really put a tear in my eye. Here is 60 kids who have been dumped at the orphanage because their parents are either addicted to drugs or alcohol. Some of them will have a chance to get adopted but they have to move on at 6 and some of these kids, at least half were bordering on being 6. They dont really have much hope in this world where they will probably have to go back to drug addicted parents or worse, out on the streets.

It really was a humbling experience and I have pics of me piggy backing these kids and throwing them up in the air so they could touch the roof. The smiles I received from this is more than anything I could want.

The place is run by 3 nuns, one from Columbia and two from Argentina and they do a fantastic job. They also have helpers who volunteer their time there and the place is clean and safe and they have toys etc. The kids seem happy but its just such a shame that they have to move out at 6 years of age.

That night we went out for dinner and I had a plain steak and boiled spuds, man it was bland but because im sick I couldnt have anything else. I used a heap of salt and pepper to give it flavor but hey, at least I could eat as I hadnt eaten since La Paz as I started to get the infection on the overnight bus. Am thinking that it was probably from ice that would have been in the cocktails I was drinking in La Paz.

Oh before I forget, just before we left La Paz Raphael gave us all a gift. The indigenous people of Bolivia and Peru are really superstitious and at the witches market you can buy all sorts of weird amulets etc. They even buy Llama fetuses and bury them under their house for protection and long life. WEIRD!!!!

One of the things all Bolivian people believe in is Pacha Muma, probably have not spelt that right but it means Mother Earth. They sell stone amulets at the witches market and it was one of these that Raphael presented us all with. I have been carrying mine in my pocket for protection and safe passage. But I thought the gift was such a nice thing for him to do.

Anyway after dinner last night I got an early night and what is kind of good is that im starting to feel better today. I am going to make sure that I finish my prescription because maybe it has come back and was related to my illness in Cusco ??? who knows.

This morning we had a wake up call at 5.30am and we all got on a bus and headed for Potosi which is where we are now. This morning we walked around SLOWLY Potosi is 4100 metres above sea level and one of if not the highest city in the world. It is even higher than Lhasa in Tibet.

For lunch we went to this coffee place were I actually got a toasted ham and cheese sandwich, it was marvelous, I have ordered about 5 of them here and this is the first place that has bread, they all sell sandwiches as rolls here so a simple Ham and cheese toastie was exactly what the doctor ordered.

Anyway better leave this one here, its 2.34 and at 3 we are all meeting up and doing a silver mine tour. It should be great and afterwards we are all chipping in and buying some dynamite and Raphael is going to blow something up for us, hehehehehe im like a little kid again. Luckily he has done it several times and has assured us its going to be totally safe.

Until next time.



Posted by gasheppard 10:39 Archived in Bolivia

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