Day 2 – Losing Altitude in Bolivia

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In the still of the night and the dark of the morning a white Toyota HILUX nibbles it’s way over the cobbles and speed bumps up and out of La Paz.

Our destination is Caranavi and we thread our way out of town; our rope we cling to is the “Highway of Death” formerly known. Since significant upgrades it now can be referred to as the “Highway of Sometimes Death but thankfully not as often.”
It’s lost something in becoming safer hasn’t it?
Travel time has gone from seven hours to four. The blanket of dark diminishes but cannot completely conceal the enormous mountains on either side, silhoueted and hulking. Guardian like in their overwatch.

The descent out of La Paz has had the benefit of turning on the tap to the flow of oxygen to the brain and the near immediate resolution of headaches for all.
Thoughts travel briskly once again where before they had been reluctant in the oxygen deprived capital. I would have a thought but then just watch it putter around my mind, only ever leaving reluctantly as expressed in words.

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Our casa here in Caranavi is somewhere between a half star and five. Checked in a plan was hatched to explore but quickly abandoned and all retired for a much needed rest.

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Restored at midday, Mr Ian extended the hospitality of a cup of coffee-Rwandan, brewed in the travellers best friend-the Almighty Aeropress.
It was profoundly delicious in that special way that food and drink consumed al fresco always is.
For a moment the hotel gained 3 stars- and wrapped in the cool of the shade, a briskly tart cup and some delightful conversation ranging from the market (It was down $.04-nice!) to what to do next and everything in between; the world was ours.

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We spent the afternoon poaching nicely in our own sweat, exploring the streets (does anyone need anything?) and a short visit to Anditrade a private enterprise specializing in premium prep coffees. Obviously it’s not a Coop and as such we cannot be friends. 🙂
If you’re buying high end, non-certified coffees from Bolivia, this is the place you’re getting them from.

Two parting thoughts from the street:

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The dentist. Comforting to know that should you need an emergency root canal, you can get one. Also the last place, just above a Bolivian prison, that I’d like to end up.

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Coffee drying on the street-non-certified I think. Probably for sale at the right price.

Tomorrow brings us to the heart of the matter and visits to two coops a day for the following three days.

Stomachs are strong and morale is high.
Over and out.

 Aaron

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