Saturday 7 June 2008 1 °C
margaret and i have mentioned a few times already since getting here... that we´re mad! mad when it comes to our south america itinerary! it took 3 flights and over 24 hours to get to bolivia. we arrived at our hotel at the back of 3am, up at 9am and then left that night for an 11 hour overnight bus journey to uyuni.
we are soooo knackered. not only are we tired with the travelling and jet lagged. but bolivia is a pretty high country... la paz is 4 times the height of ben nevis and we´re finding it difficult to breathe.
we were packing our bags today and i had to stop talking because i was so out of breath lol.
the bus journey was a nightmare. the first 4 hours was okay. then it was 7 hours of constant bumpy roads. try taking a piss on a bus when ur getting thrown about all over the place. try sleeping actually. it was terrible. my head was thumping and i felt like greeting lol. i then left the bus to find chocolate all over my arse!
the only good thing that came from that bus journey is that it´s made me realise that the bus journey to the orphanage in africa will be worse!! so i´m defintely getting a flight now. the bus journey in africa is longer... and the roads are far worse. so hell to that. flight it is.
our itinerary for here is so jam packed. we say we´re mad. but then we´d be completely mad not to do it. if we can fit in then what the hell. our main reason for coming to bolivia and getting the bus to uyuni is to see the salt flats. so many people have mentioned that it´s been their highlight of south america... heard lotsa good things about the place. so we leave tomorrow at 11am for a 2 day tour. staying overnight in a salt hotel. yup, a hotel made completely out of salt. will let you know how it all goes in a few days hopefully.
anyway, our first couple of days... landed in la paz and shared a taxi with some bolivians to save the driver petrol money. what an experience. me and margaret had to share the front seat. i was sitting on the gear stick. margaret was pissing herself laughing anytime the driver went to change gear. she´s got such an infectious laugh as well so we were all pissing ourselves laughing in the taxi.
it took the guy forever to try and find our hostel. in the end we gave up, we were just so tired so we got dropped off at the nearest hotel.
we spent the first day walking about la paz and getting our transport sorted for our days in bolivia. la paz is lovely. quite surprised at how much i like it. it´s a poor place, run down looking but still so beautiful with the mountains in the background. so different to anywhere i´ve ever been.
and the locals have been amazing. so friendly... just wish i knew more spanish so i could talk to them more.
and with it being such a poor country you expect to be hassled all the time to buy things. but they haven´t at all. it´s been great. it makes such a difference.
we´re now in uyuni. and it´s frrrreezing! didn´t expect it to be sooo cold. there´s no heaters in the hostel... and i haven´t exactly packed winter clothes. and then we got told the shower is only hot from 2pm to 5pm. so no hot shower in the morning. so we are now, again, in a hotel. not having much luck with hostels lol.
we wouldn´t have been so bothered normally but for the next 2 nights we´ll be without showers so we kinda need some home comforts for 1 night.
pics from uyuni:
after the salt flats tour we then leave uyuni that night back to la paz. yup, the dreaded overnight bus again. not looking forward to it one bit. but i´m pretty damn sure that the next 2 days will make it all soooo worth while...