Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The Wild West

Shopping for dynamite and ciggies - gifts for the miners at Potosi

Back in the "normal" world that is Bolivia now for nine days. In this time Ed and I have been plauged by nightmares about Pumas, Jaguars and Ocelots most nights. Both of us have even woken up thinking that a cat is in the room. It has been a bumpy ride back to earth for both of us. But onwards and Southwards we go. In the last nine days we have managed to pack in a huge amount of activity - first to Colonial Sucre the pretty ex capital of Bolivia, then to Potosi the highest city in the world at a breathtaking 4000 metres - once the largest city in the world and famous for it's silver mines. We got to go into these mines, a claustrophobics nightmare as we crawled in darkness into the belly of mountain and into the hellish conditions that the miners work in. 40 degree heat and air full of arsenic anyone? For more on this weird trip check out Eds blog.

Then we arrived in the wild west town of Tupiza, famous for it's amazing desert landscape of canyons, towers and red rocks. It has even more wild west cred as this was the place Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid whiled away their final days robbing banks and payrolls before going out in a blaze of glory and bullets. It is hot (yay!), dry and luckily for us our hotel has a pool. Unlukily for us we are stuck here for a while cause of "bloquedas" a kind of strike where they block off the roads and close all business. If you attempt to cross the blockade they protesters will throw ricks at you so sneaking through isn't an option. Hope we aren't stuck for too many days, we have a date with Argentina and then Santiago in a couple of days.


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