24th Apr 2008
Stranded in Peru...
Aarghh!! Would these damn South Americans already STOP their protesting efforts?? I am currently in Puno in Peru, crossed over here from Bolivia yesterday to see the "Floating Islands" that are islands made of grass and people actually live on them.... My plan was to quickly check out the islands and then continue further into Peru, into Arequipa on the coast.
Weeeeell... nooot so fast!! It turns out the city of Puno has started a strike this morning, and no one is allowed to leave or to enter this city!! The protesters have set up road blocks so that cars cannot get past. Niiiicceee..... Apparently the stike affects the whole county where Puno is located. No one has been able to explain to me who exactly is behind this strike and when it will end. From what I have gathered though is that the people demanding more money are the doctors, lawyers etc. and to make their point clear, they have stopped all traffic in and out of Puno. Not so great for me, since my plan was to already be in Arequipa by now!! Instead I am stuck here in the boring little Puno, wasting my precious travel days.... well, the word on the streets is that the strike should only last for this one day, so let's keep our fingers crossed!!
I spent my last few weeks in Bolivia being extremely active ---for example, I took a 3-day boat trip to Rurrenabaque, Bolivia's Amazon basin. I just wish someone had told me that to get to the boat we´d have to drive 10 hours on SCARY windy mountain roads, dangerously close to a dip of 600 metres!! That was the worst (mini)bus ride of my life, easily!! Many of the corners of that not-that-wide mountain road had been washed away, and once we even got stuck in the mud! There were several times when the minibus curved dangerously close to the 60-meter dip and I thought my days were done!! Needless to say, I was kissing the ground and the river once we FINALLY got to the boat trip's starting point. Phew!!
Once in the Amazon basin, I also took a tour of the pampas, a wet grassland area. We went around the pampas with our little river boat for a few days and spotted lots of wildlife: little monkeys, alligators (or caymans as they were called), piranjas (fished for them and ate for lunch!), big birds, turtles and river dolphins (we even tried to swim with them, hah! They kept their distance though, aside from nibbling some people's toes a few times). Our accommodation place in the jungle also had a "pet alligator" (cayman) on site... a tad scary as those beasts can hardly be domesticated!!
My last stop in Bolivia was Lake Titicaca, "the world's highest navigable lake", meaning it is the world's biggest lake at the whopping altitude of 3,800 meters or something like that... I visited Isla del Sol, which is a very beautiful island where you can take hikes and it is supposedly also the birth place of the Sun! So believed the Incas anyway....
But yeah, now I am in Peru! Let's hope this strike ends as planned so I can continue my adventures soon! :)
|24th Apr 2008 Jungle girl|
|Here we are, hunting for anacondas in the mud... didn't find any though. As you can see, I am really dressed for a jungle excursion. Haha!|
|24th Apr 2008 Chilling at the river...|
|This one was taken at the pampas tour in the Bolivian Amazon...|
|24th Apr 2008 Fishing for piranjas!|
|Okay well, maybe I didn't catch any of those...hah... but they were still real piranjas!|
|24th Apr 2008 Just another Peruvian!|
|Here I am, dressed in traditional regalia from the floating islands of Puno...haha, kidding! I am not REALLY wearing that lovely outfit, it was just placed on my regular clothes...|
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