We have spent 2 days so far in the capital of Bolivia, La Paz. This city is absolutely beautiful. The whole city is in a bowl shaped valley with snow capped mountains in the background. You can’t get lost in the city cause you just walk downhill to the center but it is easy to get winded at an altitude of 4000 meters (highest capital in the world). Anyway, we have become quite lazy after being on too many buses. We found a place where you can get a huge bowl of 10 kinds of chopped fruit topped with yogurt and granola for 30 cents US. We have made good friends with the lady at the shop and we even have a running tab with her cause we have been there so many times. La Paz has some unique things which can’t be missed. There are guys everywhere on the street wearing ski masks (terrorist style) and instead of carrying guns like you’d think, they are carrying shoe polish equipment. We thought they were wearing their army garb and masks cause of the cold but it got really hot today and now we realize it is just fashion. It is great for the 95% of people who are wearing black shoes. For us and our constant sandal wearing, they give us an odd and then disappointed look. The other really noticeable (annoying) thing about La Paz is every 2 seconds a minivan will drive by with someone hassling you to get in. You see, they use them as buses in the city cause buses couldn’t handle the tight corners and the steep roads.

Our hostel is in the middle of the Witches Market. Here, all the witchy items you ever wanted like llama fetuses, idols, and various herbs. They said they would cast a spell on us if we took pictures of their llama fetuses. Kevin somehow managed to get one and avoid the curse (he is really agile).

We finally broke down from our “lightest ever” mentality and went shopping crazy. Every Peruvian item of clothing that you want is available and cheap. With our hats and alpaca jackets, we can sneak around in the culture unnoticed. This is quite useful because people here have a violent objection to gringos wanting to take pictures of them.

-steve

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