Posted by: jimndianne | January 1, 2010

La Paz – Christmas Eve

24 December 2009 La Paz, Bolivia

It’s time for Jim to write… We woke up much refreshed after our gruelling past two days ready to take on what ever La Paz 001had to offer. Our friends’ house (pictured) is in the south zone of La Paz, slightly lower  than the other areas. If you can imagine travelling over a flat landscape at an altitude of over 4000 metres and you come across a gigantic crater of approximately 8-10km in diameter and about 1000m deep then you will have found La Paz!! A great deal of the floor of the ‘crater’ has already been built on either by the commercial region or with housing.

The area we are staying in is San Miguel, on the south side, and as it was the day 

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before Christmas, off we went shopping. The prices of goods were very reasonable, especially foodstuffs, and this was really brought to our notice.  A good bottle of red, we found for US$3.80, which was a local brew. Plenty of other reasonably priced wines from Argentina, Chile and Peru.

That night we were invited to a Christmas Eve dinner just down the road at an expat couple’s place which proved to be very interesting. Talk about a race of nations it was all on! The host was a Dane, the hostess was Dutch and the other guests were from Germany, Norway, England, USA and of course, us, from NZ! They were all staff from various embassies. We were told prior to coming to the evening that each of us had to bring three presents, one we would want to give away, one we would really want to keep and one which was absolutely kitch! This was a real puzzle to us as well as to Gaby and Gert but all was about to be revealed!. After a very nice meal of roast turkey, pork  with all the trimmings and other yummy stuff, we settled down to this ‘game’. Well we had  to put all the presents under the tree and the rules were explained. A dice was produced and each of us threw it in turn. A ‘1’ thrown meant you missed a turn, ‘2’ the direction changed, ‘3’ you picked any parcel from under the tree, ‘4’ you swapped with someone else (they couldn’t refuse), ‘5’ you missed a turn and ‘6’ you stole a present from someone else. Got off to a good start but the host speeded it up by producing a second dice to rotate around the table as well as the first dice. Phew, that really threw us all into a tizz! Great fun and quite shambolic! Probably drank  too much then we walked home and off to bed. A great night was had by all!!

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