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Old 03-10-2013, 12:49 PM   #301
Hewby OP
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Originally Posted by BcDano View Post
Congrats Deb,

I think the smile says it all. Proud to have been along for a part of the ride and you with us as well.

Keeper on two wheels and we look to seeing you and Marcin on the west coast??
Look forward to catching up with you both, and thank you again for all your support getting me on the road from before I even bought my bike. And just so you know the Starbucks fuel bag was just the ticket!
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Old 03-11-2013, 05:52 AM   #302
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Nice work
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Old 03-11-2013, 09:32 AM   #303
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Good Show young lady.
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Old 03-11-2013, 07:19 PM   #304
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Well done on making it to the bottom!

Hi Debs,

Congrats on making it to the bottom sounds like you had a tough trip but a fun one what now?

Chilling in the Hammock way back when!


groetjes
Phill

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Old 03-11-2013, 07:36 PM   #305
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Hi Debs,

Congrats on making it to the bottom sounds like you had a tough trip but a fun one what now?

groetjes
Phill

phillysbigtrip.wordpress.com
Hey Phill. Drinking wine with Carlos and Alison celebrating the sale of her bike. Mine hopefully sold tomorrow. Then the adventure of going home on Sunday . Work and dealing with USA immigration. Joy. Enjoy Brazil.
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Old 03-12-2013, 12:19 AM   #306
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congratulations on getting to Ushuaia and the pending sale of your bike...
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Old 03-12-2013, 03:05 AM   #307
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Thanks Paul. Fingers crossed.
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Old 03-12-2013, 06:37 AM   #308
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Bravo Debbie !! what a great ride !!! thanks for sharing all your adventure with us

Saludos
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Old 03-12-2013, 03:47 PM   #309
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Bravo Debbie !! what a great ride !!! thanks for sharing all your adventure with us

Saludos
Thanks Mario, and I wil get round to documenting the rest. But thank you for sharing your country with me!
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:41 AM   #310
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Hey Phill. Drinking wine with Carlos and Alison celebrating the sale of her bike. Mine hopefully sold tomorrow. Then the adventure of going home on Sunday . Work and dealing with USA immigration. Joy. Enjoy Brazil.

Deb:

I'm shedding a tear, but happy your bike may be sold.

Your bike was a companion to me on our Oregon trip back in 2010, from it's previous owner

Perhaps our paths will cross if you are ever back in British Columbia

bob
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Old 03-29-2013, 03:22 PM   #311
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ok.... back on track with this report!

Bolivia, 13 Feb

Potosí is still in the midst of water bombs and Carnival festivities. I decide to take a tour of the silver mine, but am warned that this tour would be different, many of the miners taking off the holidays and enjoying the festivities.

At one point in history, the booming silver mine of Potosi led the city to become one of the largest cities in the Americas and the world, with a population exceeding 200,000 people. The lucrative mine led to a Spanish saying valer un potosí, "to be worth a potosí" (that is, "a fortune"), however since the depletion of the silver from the mine the town is now in tatters. After extensive colonial exploitation, the state took over the mine, pulling out in the 1980’s due to declining productivity and viability. Now independent miners form co-ops to eek a living from the depths of the earth. The poor and dangerous working conditions (including cave ins and lack of protective equipment from the constant inhalation of dust), lead the miners to have a short life expectancy, with most of them contracting silicosis and dying around 40 years of age. But the miners are getting another injection of cash with the increase of tourists, giving some miners a way out of the mines, by brining tourists in.

The tour company I choose, “Greengo” was run by “Don" Julio Morales, a man passionate about the protection of the mountain, pessimistic about the government providing infrastructure for the town and alternate work for the people. He talked of the problem of having no other jobs available. The miners that would work tirelessly in the mine that their children might have an education and not share their fate, but the problems due to lack of sexual education and young people being trapped with a family that they needed to support in a town that had few options. And so the cycle continued. He attempted to help us get an 'in' on the country that I had felt so alien from, begging us to listen to the radio in the local bus as the president, who is also surprisingly the head of the coca famers association, pushing for the exportation of coca leaves. A move he Julio said was crazy, as he stuffed the leaves into his mouth chewing them into a ball that he would work on over the next few hours. Coca while being an important to the miners to stay awake and alert in the mines and stave off hunger, was the base product of cocaine currently not legal for export.

He took us to the miners market and finally my questions on the dried baby lamas fetuses was answered. Miners burning or burying the lamas for an offering to ‘Pachamumma” the goddess of the earth. A full grown Lama was too expensive so there was a roaring trade in the fetus to bring luck and good fortune to the miners.

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Touring the small stores where the miners went for supplies, we were to discover that as most of the protective equipment was prohibitively expensive, many of the miners could only afford little, and so the store mainly offered second hand gear including facemasks and respirators.
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Sticks of dynamite also lined the shelves…

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Heading down into the mine we were warned that there had been a cave in overnight. Julio took a look in the mine and told us we could navigate the collapse and continue into the bowels of the mountain.

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He showed us the seams of metals un obtainable as the held up the roof and support of the tunnels

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And introduced us to “Teo” or the devil, worshiped by the very catholic miners scared of the wrath of the god of the underground. The place where miners would share their drink as an offering to appease, in hope they would stay safe in the chasms of hell, where they spent their most of their existence. He had also been wrapped in streamers to celebrate Carnival.

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After a few hours underground, coming into the light was delightful.

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Many of the miners were not at work that day, but instead the co-op hosted a party for the miners to which we were invited to share drinks and dancing…

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One of the little girls came up to me, so I taught her to use my camera…. I thought of all the old camera we struggle to give away, and I really wish I had a spare to leave with her.

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Old 03-30-2013, 08:14 AM   #312
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Wooooo, Hewby's back! :)
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Old 03-30-2013, 09:16 AM   #313
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Your photography is so good, you always capture the way the environment felt. It's so easy to line up the narrative with the photos. Keep it up!
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Old 03-30-2013, 01:53 PM   #314
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Wooooo, Hewby's back! :)
Thanks Dusty rags- It may take me a while but I have to finish this trip properly. ;)
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Old 03-30-2013, 01:55 PM   #315
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Your photography is so good, you always capture the way the environment felt. It's so easy to line up the narrative with the photos. Keep it up!
Cheers Tex76. I used to only remember my travels through photos, they are what brings it all back for me. Glad you like them.
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