Blogging in from Bolivia!


Well, I had really expected to be blogging every day, but there is no Wi Fi anywhere in Sorata and the connections in the internet cafes are very slow; so my first blog starts two weeks into my stay in Sorata.
I had a warm welcome at the BQE office in La Paz and I was glad to meet them after my two day journey from home. There was a strike at La Paz airport so I spent the best part of two days in the airport hotel in Miami – not a good start!
The journey by minibus from La Paz to Sorata was breathtaking. The last 40 minutes or so is a dirt track and I still can’t see how so much food, building materials and all the necessities for life in a small town actually get here along those roads.
I was excited to actually arrive at the Internado after so many months preparation. The students who live there during the week are very friendly and I think they have just about accepted me in spite of my strange Spanish. One or two are determined to teach me a word of Aymara every day and I am not a good student! Today will be my first session of voluntary, extra English practice after supper. There seems to be quite a bit of interest, which is not surprising as the level of English taught at the school is extremely low.
As other volunteers have commented in their blogs, the work at the school is demanding although the students are keen to work with new materials and generally respond well. They really need a native speaking language teacher who is able to commit for a year at least, to get the English curriculum off the ground.
The climate in Sorata is idyllic, like a permanent British summers day. La Paz was much cooler and wetter. I wish I could upload some pictures to show what a beautiful place this is.
Colin [my husband] arrives next week and we are intending to travel to Lake Titicaca and to the salt flats in the south of Bolivia. The planning is not easy as every trip will have to be preceded by a 4 hour bus journey to La Paz.
I hope to blog again soon. Love to all who read this.

hilary in Bolviderland


Congradulations on making a great start this month. Going from the EL Alto airport at 13,000 feet to the green hills of Sorato must have been a pleasant shock. Thank you so much for all your help in teaching English at high schools. Elizabeth Luz the teacher at Emmanuel Escuela will welcome you and I found her wonderful to work with.  I'm glad you're going to Lake Titicaca where the sun was born. Or was it the moon. Ah, ofcourse, both the sun and moon rose first from the highland crystal lake of mystery.

Your first church service will be interesting. Smaller meetings like Vida y Luz have a 100 or so. Large churches like Sorata will ask you questions like how many angels rode out in Revelations or the book of the Apocalypse. At their final prayers when they are emptying their hearts at the altar, it reminds me of a cacaphony of speaking in tongues. When, oh Spirit, will I learn to Listen in Tongues?


Minga Claggett-borne

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