‘Bus trip in Bolivia’ is a way to learn an endless meditation

17 hour bus trip from Sucre to Potosi, in Bolivia
in July 2009

지형이 험악하고 도로사정도 좋지 않은 볼리비아의 버스 여행은 쉽지 않았다. 지도로 보면 2시간 정도 걸릴까 하는 길이 10시간을 훌쩍 넘겨 간다. 길도 여의치 않고, 고도차이도 심하니까.
흔들리는 차안에서는 책을 읽기도 어렵고 하염없이 공상의 나래를 펼 뿐이다. 잠이 오면 다행이고. 그렇게 수시간을 하고 또 수시간이 남았다면, 내가 인간이 아니라 하나의 짐짝이라 상상하곤 한다. 아픔도 불편도 모르는.
그리하여 볼리비아의 버스여행은 ‘명상’하는 법을 배우기 좋다.

이제 해발은 3000미터에서 4000미터로 향하고, 온세상은 초록색을 잃고 흙빛으로 변한다. 버스 창가로 보이는 풍경은 내가 알던 지구의 모습이 더이상 아니다. 어렸을 적 보았던 화성의 풍경이 딱 이렇지 않았던가.

It doesn’t look a far away from Santa Cruz to Sucre, Bolivia. It’s about 300-400 km distance. But it took 17 hours. The road was unpaved. The bus was run down. We climbed up. (Santa Cruz : 450m alt./ Sucre : 2800m alt.) In this country, before looking at the map, you’d better check out the altitude first. 

Of course, I was exhausted after the trip. But I thanked the old dusty bus for not breaking down during 17 hours. It’s amazing that people made the roads in such a place (nature here..how can I explain?..It’s like you’re in the Mars. Yellow, dusty, aride, desolate …quite unreal)

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Aesthetic of the dryness
Aesthetic of the dryness
From Santa Cruz to Sucre, 17 hours bus trip on the unpaved road
From Santa Cruz to Sucre, 17 hours bus trip on the unpaved road
Thank my run down bus, for having worked for 17 hours without breaking down
Thank my run down bus, for having worked for 17 hours without breaking down

Whenever bus passes through a village, there are many indigenous women running after the bus to sell some drinks and food.

Some new cultural experience :
collective pissing on the street with the indigenous women in chatting…made us feel so close…
When bus stopped at midnight, bus driver asked us to go to bathroom if necessary. I went out of bus. BUT there is no toilet, lots of people just pissed on the street. What can you do? When in Rome, do as the Romans do!

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