Friday, September 16, 2011

There's a baby Llama on the bus!

Since American Airlines had conspired against my aspirations to climb Huayna Potosi I spent the my last days in Bolivia baking bread, making cookies and ploughing a field. 

After Sucre, the city that made it all better; including my camera and my favourite jeans. The city that brought me back to warm days and my gave me a taste of what its like to feel the wind in my hair with my first motor bike lesson; I was bummed to be leaving so soon. I was even more bummed when I arrived at the bus terminal to discover that my "mejor, semi cama transportation" was in fact reminiscent of a 20 or 30 year old Greyhound bus. 

The bus loaded with locals, children and Llamas (ok there was one!) and we head off towards Santa Cruz, 13 hours later we arrived at my destination, a small village called Samaipata where I would spend the next couple days. Nearby to the village is UNESCO World Heritage site, El Fuerte, the biggest waste of 90 Bolivianos and most boring afternoon of my time in Bolivia! I did get a hot and sweaty 10km walk out of it and a young military boy almost fell off his motorbike as he tried to pinch my ass while riding past, so I guess the afternoon wasn't a total loss!

One of the great things about being at an altitude closer to sea level is that I was returned to my patterns of undisturbed slumber. After a blissful 12 hours I woke to fresh coffee, homemade yoghurt, muesli, marmalade, bread and fruits. A day of not much else ensued, cards with the Swiss guy volunteering at the hostel, a lazy lunch of tomatoes and tuna mayo courtesy of the local mercado, a short hike up a mountain for a view overlooking the town and dinner with a couple of new friends and my new favourite Bolivian beer of choice Pa├žena Negra. 

With only a few days till I headed North I edged my way closer to Santa Cruz and stopped off at a local organic farm; Gingers Paradise, where I would spend a couple days toiling for my bed and breakfast. Ploughing a field by hand was quite toil-some but the rest of my duties were mainly helping out it the kitchen and learning to cook and bake some delicious food, so honestly it was more a lark than work! 

After a couple of days of farm life it was time to head onto Santa Cruz and take to the skies again for the first leg of my homeward journey. South America is wonderful and I look forward to my next jaunt which I already have planned in some detail, but for now, honestly I could not be more ready for the southern hemisphere, my beloved Melbourne, my family and my friends... it has been over four years since I have lived in Australia and I am ready to forge ahead with a new career and in my true, do everything backward form, head to University.

As I touch down on US soil for the fourth time in as many months, endure the usual, painfully long immigration queue and then proceed to haemorrhage cash on a mexican-esque dinner that would cost me in the region of only 1 Boliviano just yesterday, South America and the adventures of the past 9 months begin to fade into the past....

The views are always

El Fuerte...boring...

Samaipata...super cute


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