If there is one thing that my partner & I have in common it is that we are both ‘one way people’. We hate to return anywhere the same way. Since neither one of us is the voice of reason this has gotten us into a lot of interesting situations. We were traveling through Bolivia and wanted to get to southern Peru with out going back through Puno. This is how we came to be on a 13 hour overnight bus ride.
Most of the 13 hours was on dirt roads with lots of unscheduled stops. We stopped for every stray person and had more than our share of flat tires. At about one o’clock in the morning the control police boarded and turned on all of the lights and demanded passports. We were a little concerned because Jim had already lost his visa, but they seemed very uninterested in the only Gringos on a very Bolivian bus.
The next stop a few hours later was a little more exciting. Bon fires and loud gunfire heralded it. Huge squads of military surrounded the bus. We all sat in stunned silence. After about 45 minutes our bus along with a long line of assorted other vehicles was guided through a field and around a huge bon fire with lots of locals in the middle of the road. Seems like the locals are tired of low wages and had created a blockade. Once more we were on our way.
The sun had risen over dusty villages and we were wondering at our sanity since we still didn't know how we were progressing the rest of the way through the country when we came to a town we didn't expect to see. Somehow the bus had diverted itself 3 hours south to Potosi. Jim grabbed my hand and our baggage and we departed the bus. So much for our planned destination of Sucre. We were getting off.