This is day 8 in the 30-day series “An Act of Kindness by a Stranger“. We need a place to stay in Santa Cruz.
With 1,5 million inhabitants Santa Cruz, in eastern Bolivia, is the second largest city in the country. Generally we prepare our visits to such large places, at least in terms of a place to sleep. For some reason we haven’t done that this time, but we do have a GPS waypoint from our previous stay in Santa Cruz 2.5 years ago and hope we can stay there once more.
The GPS waypoint is next to the airport: Asociación de Pilotes Civiles, the sign says. Like the last time, the place looks incredibly inviting: lots of shade and space. To our question whether we can stay here we get two answers: Continue reading
One of the restaurants in Bolivia where we had lunch
This is day 7 in the 30-day series “An Act of Kindness by a Stranger”. We have stopped for lunch at a roadside restaurant in eastern Bolivia.
The owner asks what I’d like to have. I can choose between costilla frita and milanesa. I ask if I can have the milanesa without the milanesa, if she understands what I mean. We arrived in Bolivia only a couple of days ago and after two years of speaking Portuguese, English, French and Dutch I have to dig deep to find any Spanish word at all, and am not sure if my question makes sense. Continue reading
If you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there ~George Harrison
This is day 6 in the 30-day series “An Act of Kindness by a Stranger“. Our journey through Bolivia’s Jesuit history is pleasantly interrupted by seeing some wonders of nature.
In the Jesuit Mission of Santa Ana we take a look at the map and conclude we will have to return to the mission of San Rafael in order to be able to reach San Miguel. While we are discussing this, Flora, the caretaker of Santa Ana’s Jesuit Mission, chimes in and says there is another road which, in fact, is a short cut. Continue reading
The only Jesuit Mission built of stone: San José de los Chiquitos
This is day 5 in the 30-day series “An Act of Kindness by a Stranger“. We are in San José de los Chiquitos, one of the former Jesuit missions in eastern Bolivia.
Outside it is bloody, bloody hot with temperatures high in the thirties and everything dripping with humidity. We feel like we’re slowly being cooked in a pressure cooker. We’re thirsty. The car with our bottles of drinking water is on the other side of the plaza but having to walk over there feels as exhausting as having to run a marathon. We’d rather stay in the former Jesuit church, pleasantly cool thanks to its thick walls.
Corumbá Harbor at night
These are days 3 and 4 in the 30-day series “An Act of Kindness by a Stranger”. We are camping in the harbor of Corumbá, on the Brazilian border.
We have a problem: Yesterday Coen replaced the Land Cruiser’s oil but now the filter is leaking. When he takes it apart it becomes clear that there are a couple of punctures due to rust. He needs epoxy glue to fix it and chats with a couple of boatmen to find out where he can buy it. Continue reading
Yvette lets us taste the fresh peanut butter of the peanut factory in Aranaputa
Do you know anybody who doesn’t like peanut butter? I don’t and nobody has ever understood why I didn’t like it.
Neither did I. I just didn’t. Continue reading
This is day 1 in the 30-day series “An Act of Kindness by a Stranger”. Today I did not encounter 1 but 2 friendly gestures worth sharing, which I consider a positive omen for this project.
We are camping at a petrol station near Campo Grande, in southwest Brazil. The Land Cruiser is being washed. There is no automatic carwash system where you put your car on a belt and the employee only has to push a button (a system that is practically non-existent in South America). Nope, washing cars is generally still done by hand, and so it is taking a while. Continue reading
Sharing Time and Knowledge with a Stranger, here in Bhutan, where the owner of a restaurant taught us our first words in Bhutanese.
So often we encounter kindness, and so often from people we don’t even know. For the next 30 days I will share these acts of kindness by a stranger with you. For me to become more mindful and for you how simple joys can make the day of a traveler. Continue reading
We have been staying with a family in a gold-mining town. Uma, our host, lives with her parents and her young son Nigel on the outskirts of town. She suggested we should visit one of her aunties and family for a celebration. It takes a bit of patience but we are rewarded with how it feels to eat with our fingers again. (For some reason we have no photos of this particular day, but these will give you an impression of Guyana’s countryside). Continue reading
We had been driving all day through the rainforest and couldn’t find a place to camp because there weren’t any clearings. Until we came upon a fork and, in the distance, saw an antenna, which indicated habitation. We drove there and arrived at Anarika, which turned out to be a logging concession. We asked for permission to stay, which was granted, and were shown around by the passionate guard Owen. Continue reading
What were we going to do with 100 limes? An hour ago we thought we were going to be stuck with a bottle of cachaça and a kilo of sugar which had become useless as the main ingredient for our favorite cocktail had been missing: limes. And now we had 100. Continue reading
Leaves of the carnauba tree are braided into a hat.
With his six brothers and parents, Marinaldo lived on fishing. Day in, day out. “We would leave on Monday, be gone the entire week fishing in either the lakes or if there was not enough water we’d go out on the ocean and return on Saturday. We’d have one day at home and we were off again.” Continue reading
Curiosity is lying in wait for every secret.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Why did I not think of this before? I’ll just buy tapioca and we’ll make beiju,” I concluded.
It was such a simple solution to such a simple problem: staying in a village where I couldn’t find bread and needed something for breakfast. Continue reading
Even we can’t beat this slow pace: 1300 kilometers in 7 months; an average of 6 kms/day. Yet, even if they wanted to, these people couldn’t travel any faster, for you see, these 9 tropeiros and 1 woman have to lead 1376 cows from the breeder to their new owner. Continue reading
Meet Viktor, his wife Jacqueline, their daughter Isabella and their cookie business Meu Doce Pará. They make a living by baking and selling minuscule cookies, of which the baking is done in a small kitchen of their apartment. Continue reading