|Our Happy Travelers|
|In the month of April our family was able to take a trip together. The main impetus behind the trip was a couple named Mark and Carol Mattix. The Mattixes have lived in Bolivia for over 40 years as missionaries in Camiri. Carol's father and Rudi's grandfather went to school together in the States and were close friends their whole lives. When we told Rudi's family that we were coming to Bolivia one of his aunts told us that we had to get in touch with the Mattixes. Well, after a year and a half we finally met Mark at our church one day and he invited us to come down and visit them in Camiri. (Camiri is about 14 hours south of Cochabamba.) It finally worked out that Mark was going to be teaching at a Brethren Conference in Potosi in April and he invited us to meet up with them there and then follow them home to Camiri. Now Potosi is NOT on the way to Camiri, per se, but we all thought we could see more of Bolivia this way and also meet some of the Saints in Potosi. We were not disappointed that we decided to go through Potosi. It was an unforgettable part of our loop through the southern part of Bolivia.|
After 12 grueling long hours of driving we made it. Our car did not do well on the hills and I assure you there were LOTS! We drove approx. 10-15 miles per hour on the hills... I am much more patient now then I was when we set out on the journey... maybe!
|Rudi, my handsome mechanic, checking the oil!|
|Local woman of the Altiplano with her sheep|
|Local man with his burros|
|Prohibited to Pass|
|"Excuse me, but didn't ya'll read the sign..."|
Another common sight is a moving van/people hauler experience. Not very comfortable, but lots of fresh air!
|Field of Quinua|
When we finally arrived at Potosi it was close to nine at night. We were met by one of the men from the local Brethren church where they were holding the conference. What a blessing to see a friendly face and be welcomed into a spacious hotel room. Since we all were starving, Rudi went across the street from our hotel and found that Potosi has the same food as Cochabamba... chicken, rice, and noodles! We feasted in our hotel room in shifts around the little table and then went to bed! Our hotel was very nice inside, but our room faced the busy street. I can't say that I slept well any of the nights we were there!
The next morning we set out for a walk through some of Potosi. Keep in mind that Potosi is at 13,000+ elevation. It is also built on a hill and almost all its streets are quite steep. None of us were too out of breath, but it wasn't super easy strolling around!
|A quaint street in Potosi shadowed by the Cerro Rico|
Mark and Carol had a friend named Steve visiting from the U.S. He became one of our "kids" for the day, as we took in the centuries old architecture and the museum of money. Steve reminded us of an older Uncle Ben. He was way too adventurous to strike out on his own without any Spanish to help him if he got lost! For some reason Paula decided he should be named "Uncle Bill", so that was his nickname.
|Steve, Carol, Mark and the rest of the Boohers, minus Rudi.|
|A church from the 1600's|
|Another Potosi street|
|Feeding the pigeons in the plaza|
|The Rudi Boohers in front of the Mint Museum. (I think Ruth needs some classes on how to pose for the camera)|
|Emily, Clancy, Clara, Myles, Paula, and Ruth (much better Ruth)|
This chest has something like twelve locks and was used to ship the coins.
|Emily modeling a treasure chest on steriods!|
|Armor made of pure silver! Cool!|
|Some of the old coins minted here.|
|Us again towards the end of the tour!|
|Wilson and Sonya|
|Eduardo and Evette|
|The view from our hotel window...|
|Rudi and Clancy on the Cerro Rico|
|Clancy in front of one of the mining entrances!|
|Potosi below the Cerro Rico|
Once again a large lunch was prepared for us in the home of some new believers. We were so blessed by their hospitality and generosity towards us. Myles was able to practice some of his Quechua with them and came away from our time in Potosi inspired to learn more. We all got a laugh out of how surprised they were to hear Myles speaking Quechua! It is not usual for a young gringo to be learning one of the native languages of Bolivia!
|Myles, Emily, and Rudi with some of the "band"!|
All we had was Clara's camera and it does not take very good pictures, but I wanted to put on a picture of us with some of the families that hosted us so well.
|Our family with several of our new friends|
Coming next...the journey to Camiri...