Bolivia: Home of Aymara, Quechua, Pachamama, thin air and vertical streets.

I’m here!  Today marks one week in La Paz.  I was off to a shaky start. According to Google, La Paz airport is the worlds highest airport situated at 13,617 ft.  As I sat in a chair slumped over gasping for air, I watched everyone else merrily gathering their bags from the conveyor belt.  I, in contrast, watched my bag go around and around while trying to conjure up enough energy to actually get up and retrieve it.  I slowly made the move then promptly shuffled over to the medic room and asked for oxygen.


A nice gentleman, who works for tips, ran over to help me out of customs and then to  a cafe.  Being out of my mind and not yet having a grasp on the conversion rate, I tipped him handsomely.   Now, not only do I have a friend for life, but I sense I was also very close to a marriage proposal!  After my loyal attendant ran off to offer his services to the next group, I proceeded to stare at the wall for two hours untill I decided it was a decent enough hour to check into my Airbnb.  After sleeping 20 hours the first day,  I was ready to conquer La Paz.

So far, I’ve been to the “White House,” the witches market, a variety of museums, rode the Telefirico (kick-ass gondolas that transport people above the city connecting the different neighborhoods in record time -Bravo La Paz!), saw a few Bolivian movies that depict their history and worldview and, to top it all off, swam in the Olympic swimming pool!  I was the only one there.  Does it get any better?


Dried llama fetuses


Still born llamas


View of city from Telefirico



Shoe-shine boy during a Sunday moment of reprieve.


Full moon from the bathroom window


14 thoughts on “Bolivia: Home of Aymara, Quechua, Pachamama, thin air and vertical streets.

  1. Nothing wrong with a marriage proposal as long as you are ready to race downhill out of town on your bike if need be or maybe move there! Loving the posts so far. Making me envious. Maybe I need to send my cycling resumé? Was just riding not to far from my house at 12,000 feet last week. Keep the pics and entries coming “Ms. Speedy if Need Be” 😉


      1. Yes, I live at the base of the Rockies plus in Colorado am used to the dry conditions. However, I do wonder on quite a few days where all the air went! One of my dreams is to ride the Andes. This, along with your connection to The Mission of Friendship and wonderful “voice” in your writing is more than enough motivation to follow your adventures via the blog. I’ll see if I can figure out how to send you my pic at 12,000 feet from a few years ago. No pics option here. Maybe I have your email address. Keep the posts coming. What fun!


  2. Wow!! I am sure I told you about when I passed out in the customs line in La Paz airport. This story brought it all back!! LOVED the romantic savior story!! Such fun reading.
    Llama fetuses….somehow I was lucky enough to miss those!! We can’t wait for the next episode!!!


  3. Ahhhh Denise, take no prisoners!! Love your contagious enthusiasm! And OMG, that full moon picture is whoa! Perfection. Dang. And I like the aside, taken from the bathroom window, funny! Sending healing vibes and bremlo love! Linds


  4. We are glad to know your off to a strong start after the 20 hour nap 🙂 Interesting pictures! what a cute shoe shine boy. Llama’s not so much! Stay healthy & happy….love is in the air! Love you!


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