La Paz Bolivia
Camino de la Muerte
Santa Cruz Bolivia
Back Home in California
Greetings from Trinidad,
Our tiny 19 passenger Fairchild plane left the La Paz Alta Airport at 14:15 Thursday for the hour flight to Trinidad. The La Paz airport is located at an altitude of about 13,000 feet and the Trinidad airport is near sea level at about 1300 feet.Trinidad is a dusty backwater full of noisy motorcycles and little or no modern infrastructure. It might well be the "real" Bolivia, though citizens clearly want a bigger piece of the modern world. Its main claim to fame is as a transportation hub and starting point for river trips into the Bolivian Amazon.
So called four star hotels are nothing of the sort... perhaps 2 star if we are going to be generous. Breakfast is a joke: orange Kool-Aid, instant coffee, one egg, a couple pieces of fruit and rock hard rolls. My first overpriced hotel, the $47 Jacaranda could only accommodate me for one night as they had sold the entire 10 room house to a tour group arriving the next day. The $30 Hotel Don Bernardo, my second hotel (still under construction) didn't even change the linens which were full of holes. To make matters intolerable, the owner-manager strutted around like royalty co-opting staff by clapping his hands for personal attention, ignoring the obvious needs of guests. The third day I discovered the toilet was clogged, prompting me to cut short my stay in this unpleasant place.
The city badly needs to send all their hotel personnel for training in La Paz where modern standards are met... and to spray the entire town for insects. While I saw plenty of mosquitoes, none ever bit me in a way that I could feel or see. Very strange. Microscopic crawlies however, explored my body every night making my body itch through the night. I never actually saw one on my skin, but now and then would see one jumping against a white background... they reminded me of flees, but invisibly smaller. Refer to this large scale MAP of Bolivia for orientation.
Fred L Bellomy
PS: In numerous discussions with my conservative friends I have often suspected their brains had evolved differently than mine. Now a study reported in the Newscientist substantiates that suspicion: Brain study shows a sharp political divide. So, when someone says "the devil made me do it," they might not be that far off. F