Saturday, October 07, 2006

Another day, another country

So here I am in La Paz, the highest world capital! Bolivia and La Paz are all about the highest everything... golf course, airport, lo que sea. Yesterday we flew to Juliaca and took a bus to Puno, which is on Lake Titicaca. What a world away from miraflores... it was relieving to see the familiar sights of indigenas tilling the land, mercados, and street vendors. We also ate some particularly good food and filled up on coca tea, coca granola bars, etc. (Coca helps with the altitude, which my dad is still adjusting to... puno isn't quite as high as la paz, but higher than quito and we had flown in from coastal lima!) Then today we made the trek to la paz. Just one bus ticket, but it was quite an undertaking as it involved crossing the border, switching buses in copacabana, getting held up in several small villages (and in la paz!) by parades of dancing indigenas (a festival day of some sort), and crossing lake titicaca (people on boats, our bus had its own little ferry). So far I am enjoying Peru and Bolivia, particularly the existance of nightlife, and the food (i'm eating my weight in quinoa!). I am not enjoying the tourist lifestyle... in ecuador even the most touristed destinations usually involve busses full of locals, and few english speaking ecuadorians. Here we have been surrounded by gringos constantly, particularly on the busses, and I'm very frustrated at not understanding the locals half the time because it turns out they are trying to speak english to me. La Paz seems more promising on this count, we are staying in a cute area near the university and have not seen so many tourists. Tomorrow I'm psyched for the coca museum and markets!
Oh, also, I'm impressed with: "Google.com.bo ofrecido en: Quechua"

4 comments:

  1. I hope the Coca Museum is as interesting for you as the Hemp Museum in Santa Cruz, CA was for me! Do they give samples?
    Mom

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  2. Yes, actually! Not that we haven't already had coca tea a million times... and down here its no teabag, you get real leaves. I don't particularly like to chew it as it makes your mouth a bit numb.
    Interesting coca fact: coca-cola doesn't use cocaine anymore (as of 1912) but it does import hundreds of tons of coca leaves every year for flavoring purposes.

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  3. My favorite things about this posting are: Titicaca (heh heh heh heh) and copacabana. The first for obvious reasons, and the second for the only slightly less obvious Barry Manilow association.

    Rock on,
    Linda

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  4. um i can't believe the google in quechua. amazing.

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