Now that we have slowed down the pace of our travel in Argentina, (and are loving it here!) I'm trying to get caught up on our blogs!...
...So back in La Paz we head to the bus terminal and follow the recommendation from America Tours office, booking two semi-cama seats to Sucre for tonight on Trans Copacabana 1 M.E.M. There are a lot of other ‘Trans Copacabana’ buses about; it seems once one has a good name, others will do a slight variation on the name to confuse matters. We (well I) am reluctant to leave our packs with the bus company all afternoon, and besides we are in our skimpy jungle clothes and will need to layer on the clothes for the bus tonight seeing as we are back at altitude. So we saddle up and head down the hill to a dirt cheap hostel to hire a room for a half a day to dump our gear and have somewhere to change later.
We dine on spicy saltinas again and then head to the Witches Market for some souvenir shopping. We turn the corner and find festivities in our face. There are locals everywhere, interspersed with tourists snapping away at the scenes in front of them. Locals in costumes are dancing, there are bonfires lit in the middle of the street and speakers blast out music. We watch for a while and then head to the other end of the street to shop in some relative peace and quiet away from the goings on. To continue our shopping and hunt Ryan down a hammock, we squeeze through the crowds, dodging people throwing alcohol onto the flames to find more bonfires waiting to be lit and tables and tables of food lining the street. When the tables of food stop, clothes laid on the street are full of food as well.
We continue to shop, stopping to watch the feast and fires and festivities intermittently. We enquire with one store owner as to the goings on and find it’s to celebrate Pacha Mama, as tomorrow is the last day of August and August is for Pacha Mama. With our shopping complete we post it all and our postcards, off from a little shack with a set of scales and little else. We had anticipated our shopping would be heavy, so are stoked when it’s only 4.4kg and is 500 bolivianos for postage. Our shopping is stuffed into a large plastic bag and we joke that’s the last we’ll see of it.
Later we hike uphill from our hostel to the bus terminal where our nice bus is waiting. We leave around 7pm, driving through what seems like some hellish traffic to get out of La Paz and eventually get onto the open road. We doze off, warm under the big blankets they provide and our layers of clothes. Next stop Sucre.
We hope everyone back home is enjoying our tales of where we go and what we get up to. Also, we're thinking of everyone still struggling with the aftershocks in Christchurch and my folks on the farm, dealing with some atrocious snow during lambing. Wish we could send you some of the warm spring weather Argentina is enjoying.
Much love to everyone from us both xx