Back to school for the second time to try and brush up on some Spanish! Hanging round with our English speaking friends has made us very lazy and we still have 3 months in Spanish speaking countries to get by in! So I´m taking over from Chris to tell you about the rest of our stay in the White city of Scure.
We made the descision to go with the Bolivian Spanish school opposite the Simon Bolivar park which features a tiny Effiel tower. Omar Chavez the face of the school won us over with his charm and winning smile and of course the reputation of the school as we´d had a recommendation from a couple of girls we´d met in Chile who were studying there.
Bolivia is a great place to study Spanish, firstly it´s super cheap, we were getting one on one lessons for 6 hours a day for half the price that we were getting 4 hours of group lessons in Buenos Aires. Sucre is a pretty and small enough town to walk to school, we were staying next door to our school for 35Bolivianos a night which worked out to a bout 3.50GBP a night. The park opposite was great to relax in at lunch or break times and far enough away from the main square to avoid getting asked if you wanted your shoes shined 10 times in 5 minutes (even if you were wearing flip flops!)
Two full weeks of Monday-Friday weeks with 6 hours of 1 on 1 lessons every day was going to be a shock to the system. It started out well. Our teachers Mirian, Jorge and Edwin were great teachers and taught us what we wanted. The excitement wore off as we got into the routine of school- break- school- lunch- homework- dinner-bed. Any time that we tried to squeeze in anything additional meant that we were brain dead the next day. However Skyfall was worth it!
Halloween also fell on a school night. By this time we´d made friends in our hostel with some more fun people including the master of haircuts-Gary- who was funding his travels through hair cuts including mine and chris´ (everyday there was someone having their hair cut in the courtyard of the hostel- news travels fast in school!) The school put on a little party as an excuse to try some traditional (so spicy we had to order pizza) foods, dress up and make new friends which we all did!
Unfortunately we had to say goodbye to our hostel friends (Sanne, Jhan, Gill) as they moved on, again we were faced with saying farewell to great people not knowing if we´d see them again. It´s the saddest thing about travelling, but is made up for by the fun times had together!
Another event that made school a little bit harder in the morning was my 30th Birthday!!!! Chris and the school organised a cake in the morning break on the Friday before my birthday (on Sunday), which was delicious, and then we celebrated on Sunday with an activity packed day. First was quad biking in the Cordillera- stunning scenery, sore legs (after chris told me to grip with the thighs so I could loosen up my hand grip to allow me to go faster) and slightly muddy trousers (not as muddy as Chris´!)
As the sun was still shining after the quads and lunch at the infamous gringo hangout-Joy ride Cafe- we taxied over (with the taxi driver´s kid in the passenger seat) to Villa Norita- the out of town “water park”- it has some flumes at least. We were very much the only tourists there and Chris by far the whitest of everyone. He caused quite a stir in his white rash vest too! I don´t think anyone had ever seen one before. The day wasn´t over after that though, failing to find a bus or cab we got a free ride with the employees from the park back to Sucre along with an old traditional Bolivian lady who was stuffed in the boot- but seemed happy enough! The cherry on top of my birthday was an amazing meal at La Taverna- a French restaurant in town with amazing steaks in beautiful sauces for 6GBP- Bolivia is heaven!
From a high point of birthday celebrations Chris also suffered a low point- getting sick. We think this was from some Leon Merengue pie at lunch (although we did both have the same) which meant that Chris had to miss 2 hours of Spanish school, but on the up side we did discover that Coca tea is very good at clearing out the system.
Our last night in Sucre was different as all the museums in town were open all night long as part of the cultural festival going on. The school organised a group to go out to several of the sites, we visited the Casa de la Libertad, The textile museum, Recoleta view point over the city and the group carried on to the cemetery catacombs by which point we´d had our fill and headed back to crash out.
After over 2 weeks in Scure we were ready to move on, although the people we´d met in Sucre did make it harder, we were looking for the bright lights and bustle of the big city of La Paz. Now were were armed to the teeth with 6 new tenses, and magazines of verbs and vocab to help us on our way!