Justins World

La Paz jail riots

So today the 3 amigos, headed down for the free red hat walking tour of La Paz. It starts in San Pedro square and our guides were a young and hip Maurizio, who probably was not wearing enough clothes by Bolivian standards., plus had ear and nose piercings. His partner in guiding was Andrea who looked fairly normal although did have a few tattoos that were out there by Bolivian standards as well.

Church in San Pedro square

Church in San Pedro square

We started at San Pedro square right next to San Pedro prison. There was a riot going on inside, lots of yelling and screaming, then something was set alight and our guides decided to move us on before the tear gas got deployed. The thing about San Pedro Prison, was that families can come and go, many live inside, because its too expensive to live outside the prison and until recently even tourists could go on tours. The prison itself is mostly a community, people buy better cells to stay in, run businesses like cafes and restaurants inside to earn money to pay for luxuries. The prison is run by the prisoners, the guards basically make sure everyone stays in side, but for those with a successful business inside they don’t want to leave. We were told a story where the prison football side was not picked up by the guards to return to the prison, so they returned there themselves.

Rioting in San Pedro prison

Rioting in San Pedro prison

We then wandered the vegetable markets and witches market. the later was where one could buy a dried llama foetus for putting under a houses foundation to satisfy the god of just about everything Pacha Mama. Not as bad as you think, because the foetus are generally still born.
We then headed down to the main square, but by then we were all a bit exhausted and needed some foor so we missed the last 2 stops, but did do the last one ourselves the next day.
In the evening we went shopping for all things alpaca wool like hats and socks. Dinner was also lovely with some llama ravioli to finish off the day.

La Paz

La Paz

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