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marge & ian’s Travel Diary

Monday, 06 Feb 2006

Location: Copacabana & La Paz - BOLIVIA*, Bolivia

MapGoodbye Peru....Hello Bolivia. Today is the day we travel to Bolivia which we heard was cheap cheap. Our plan was to go to La Paz and then the jungle, sounds easy doesn´t it?!

*Copacabana & La Paz - BOLIVIA* 06/02/06 - 08/02/06

06/02/06

The day didn´t begin as badly as it ended. Got picked up from our hostel on time to begin our 6 hour journey to La Paz. The only complication (or so we thought at the time!) was going to be the border crossing between Peru and Bolivia. After 3 hours we stopped on the Peru immigration, changed some money and then walked to the Bolivian border and immigration. Got out passports stamped. All was fine apart from cheeky b**tards as usual trying to jump the queue.

Got back on the bus for 15 minutes more and arrived at Copacabana (a "resort town"). Here we were told that there would be an hour´s break as they changed buses for the onward journey. We stored our bags in the travel office like everyone else and went off to check our emails for an hour.

We were very punctual and arrived back for the bus 15 minutes early. Chaos then ensued.... The first problem was that the bus for the onward journey was totally different to the one that we had come on, so everyone was asking which bus to get on. Ian asked the bus driver if the shit bus in front was ours, he said no.

Some of the people who were on our original bus started to get on the shit bus which obviously concerned us, so Ian asked the guy again, this time he said that it was our bus. I got on for 5 minutes, then got told to get off as I was on the wrong bus. We then milled around with all the other confused and by this point pissed off backpackers. I was then told again to get on the bus, and they told me which seats to sit in this time. I did as I was told, Ian was outside being ignored trying to get our bags in the luggage hold.... Patience were wearing extremely thin by this point. Ian was getting no closer to getting the bags on, and the guy on the bus was attempting to seat someone next to me. I obviously politely at first said that no-one could sit there as I was waiting for my husband to get on. They ignored me and kept on pointing trying to fit more people onto this bus. I eventually went mad and shoved our day packs on the seat and refused to move them, to which they finally listened.

I then got told to get off the bus again!!!!!!!!!!! We were sooo pissed off. Basically the problem was was that they had more people than seats and had overbooked. God only knows how it happened but we eneded up being the only people who didn´t get on the bus to La Paz who had tickets for the journey!!!!

We were then told that another bus would be put on for us, everytime we asked where this phantom bus was we were told "un momento". Along with another couple, we were waiting for the bus for about 1 hour before it eventually turned up.

My god what a palarvar. Anyway we settled down into our scabby seats and got our books out ready for a our 3 hour journey. We were rudely interupted again, and told to get off the bus, once bitten twice shy, I nearly stayed on the bus for fear of losing our seats again, but this time it was to cross a river.

The bus went precariously over on what can only be described as a big raft. We went over on a speedboat where I was happily sitting watching the bus make the crossing when all of a sudden my collar bone was almost broken when a 25 stone german woman lost her footing whilst boarding the boat and put her full weight onto me. Stupid stupid woman. I was furious!

The rest of the journey was uneventful and we eventually got to La Paz and looked for a hotel with the Australian couple from the journey. The first hotel we looked at was horrid. The men stayed looking after the bags while we went searching for somewhere decent.

Got to the next hotel which had sunken bed - shithole. The one after that was even worse, it looked like the sort of place that a dead prosititute would have been abandoned and the room we saw had a very ominous big stain on the scabby carpet floor which looked to me like blood - obviously didn´t opt for that one either!

We then got to the lovely Hotel Rosario a 3*, with everything that we could wish for. A lovely, clean double room. Nice bathroom, satellite tv, free brekkie and internet. We were staying here - no arguments! It was perfect....

07/02/06

....woke up at 7.30am to workmen banging furiously upstairs, so much for my nice lie in. Went to complain, spoke to the manager, who not only gave us a 50% discount for the rest of our stay but got the workmen to start work at 10.00am, result!!!

Did nothing apart from book our trip to the jungle and went and got drunk with friends that we had made on the Inca Trail who all seemed to be travelling in the same direction.

08/02/06

Went to the pub with above mentioned friends to watch the Everton -v- Chelsea game. Everton got thrashed which is not a surprise because they are shit (this one´s for Lee Traynor!).

On the way back I had to transfer the photo´s from my memory cards to cd ready for the jungle trip where we expected to take loads of photos. We were told to come back to pick up the cd and the cards at 7.30pm, its was only 7.00pm, so we checked the internet, faffed around a bit, only when we realised it was 8.10pm. So off I trundled to the shop, only to find the shutters were down and the shop was closed along with my memory cards for the camera.

To make matters worse our flight had been changed from 9.30am the next day to 6.30am, which meant that I wouldn´t be able to pick the cards up in the morning before we left. I was Gutted. So if you are wondering why there aren´t many pictures of the jungle, that is the reason.