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Latin America 2005

Journal 3

March 19, 2005

Charagua, the Chaco region and the Guarani people were 'my little oasis' in the Bolivian forest. After the ten hour bus ride on one small dirt road, I was very pleasantly surprised to see a beautiful plaza and a small town. I was expecting something similar to Santa Maria Tzeja (no electricity after 9:30, small barely put together houses…) but our bus pulled up to a small hotel with private rooms for four.

I enjoyed and was rejuvenated by this trip. The road was long, bumpy, and full of adventures (getting stuck in sand, crossing pond size puddles & ditches). At home I can make the 23 mile trip into Philadelphia in about 40 minutes. I can zip down to school from PA in four hours. This traveling in Bolivia, although tedious, really opened my eyes to the reality of their road systems. This was an important aspect of the trip for me because of what I am used to at home. There I have my own car and I use it to drive myself all over- often including 45 minute commutes spanning fourteen or so miles.

Besides the road travel, the Chaco trip consisted of a lot of dancing. When the dancers came to our hotel the second night and performed their traditional dancing - their bodies came alive and the smiles were unmistakable.

Journal by Gwen Hedrick

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