Wednesday, July 19, 2017

PRAY. FOR. TACO. (November 27th, 2011)

        Today I've decided to post this blog from my trip to Bolivia in 2011 because a few weeks ago my friend Aurelia and I realised that we were in Cochabamba during the same period of time that year. She was 16 and still in high school, I was doing a journalism internship and and being a white, western boy in a 3rd world playground.
        What makes me laugh the most in this blog entry is the part where I say, " and Jan walked the streets without any troubles before the bus ride." - that really doesn't make much sense at face value, but when I read it I remembered what I was actually talking about, but was too scared to write in my blog:
        Jan and I (also needed to fix up that grammar there silly 20-yr-old me) had walked the streets before the bus ride, but what I've left out of this post from 2011 here is that we were walking around smoking a spliff. Marijuana is illegal in Bolivia and carries with it a hefty penalty even for possession, so it was real dumb of us to walk around the streets in broad daylight smoking one. How stupid? Well, when we finally got to check in to our hostel in La Paz – which I somehow still remember was called Hostal Cactus (!??!!) – we met a girl (from the US maybe?) whose friend had just been arrested the week before for possession of a TINY amount of weed and was at the time awaiting trial and looking at a JAIL SENTENCE for his crimes.
        Jan wasn't even there by that point, he'd moved on if I remember correctly, having to get to wherever the next dot on his map was, but I remember telling Melanie later on in fearful awe, what we'd gotten away with. Looking back six years later it's just another of those dumb shit decisions that could have sent my life a completely different way.
        And here's to many more! Enjoy.

        Fuck. It's 5:40am and me, Jan, Sandrine and Melanie are sitting in some 24 hour cafe in La Paz waiting for something lovely to happen, anything at all. Let me explain.

        We all went to some village Saturday morning (26th) under the pretense of painting the old rooms in the local orphanage. All the volunteers except me, Jan and Sjoerd did just that while we played soccer with kids and were mercilessly attacked all morning. It was awesome, but whatever, right now I don't care.

        The volunteer activity thing was supposed to finish 'no later than 2pm' so we planned to leave Cochabamba on the 5pm bus - no such luck. We were back in Cocha by 4pm and left on the 7:30pm bus (which actually left at 8) to La Paz. Still relatively incident free. Heaps of rum in backup reserve and luck seemed to be on our side as me and Jan walked the streets without any troubles before the bus ride. Shit still peachy, so fuck this part of the story too.

        By the time we were on the bus and moving it was dark. We drank a little rum and did whatever you are supposed to do on a bus for 8 hours. Close calls on toilet stops and, as fucking usual, I get no sleep. Towards the end of the ride I was feeling SKETCHY and spent the last two hours lyng face down in the aisle. Culmination: projectile vomit in front of ten or so startled onlookers at La Paz bus terminal. But then I felt better, and the hotel was only a taxi ride away. Fuck blind optimism. Fuck taxis.

        After paying some faggot, idiot, ball-less, ass-face science experiment of a cab driver a retarded amount of money to drive us to 6 different hostels and make sure that yes, you are too late and yes, you are being fucked - after that, we found a hostel that was open. I don't have my immigration slip. It's back in Cochabamba. No hostel for us. Heaps of swear words.

        So with nowhere to sleep until my host brother wakes up and sends me a scan of my documentation, we are, as the two french girls sitting to my left would surely say, 'le fucked'. Things that are relevant right now:
        Not getting mugged
        Maintaining a healthy level of humour about this whole situation

        On that note; what a start to mu trip to La Paz, huh? A down right knee slapper to be sure. Ha. Ha. Ha.
        But seriously though, I'm about to kill myself.

Peace, Taco.

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