Fruit in Sucre

When we arrived to Sucre, it was the first time we had been under 3000m since we had landed in La Paz two weeks earlier. Sucre is markedly different from other cities we had visited in the Bolivian Altiplano, and not only owing to the change in climate. It is a city made up of elegant Spanish Colonial era, white washed buildings and churches. As Bolivia's legislative capital, the seat of Bolivia's Catholic Church and home to one of the oldest universities in the "New World" it is not as poor as its next door neighbour Potosi. In June 2008 a group of indigenous farmers was through Sucre's central plaza, forced to take off their shirts and burn the Wiphala and MAS flags (the Wiphala flag is that of Bolivia's indigenous people, MAS is Morales' Party). All this to the cheers of "on your knees shitty Indians", "long live the capital Sucre"... This was the current political climate when we visited Sucre. Tourists like to stick around the hostels of Sucre to learn Spanish and enjoy the lovely weather. Yann and I enjoyed the hot climate and agreed that the city was quite lovely, but concluded that it was also fairly dull. As in Potosi, we visited all the churches and museums including the one that houses Bolivia's declaration of Independence. The views of the city from the top of the Felipe Neri Convent were particularly nice. The highlight of Sucre for us was the central market where we ate all of our meals with crowds of locals. We went there every night for greasy potatoes and chicken, and every afternoon for gigantic bowls of fruit covered in yogurt. The town of Tarabuco is about 65km from Sucre, and its Sunday market is a popular excursion. Tarabuco and its neighbouring villages are renowned for their intricate textiles. We decided to visit, mainly for lack of other day trip options. Most of the vendors in Tarabuco target the visiting tourists. All sell "authentic embroideries" of various quality (after a visit to the textile museum in Sucre, it is difficult to impress). Most of the local vendors wear traditional clothing, but this seems mostly to be a show for the visiting tourists. Away from the central plaza, vendors sell everyday goods and tourists are slightly more scarce. We wandered the back streets for a few hours, but we were still disappointed by the "market". Back in Sucre, Yann and I joined a group of tourists racing to the fruit stalls. Despite arriving past closing time, we managed to get a vendor to sell us all fruit cups through the locked gates. Yann and I enjoyed our last treat before our long trip to Lima.

1 comment:

Hannah Beattie said...

yo! I don't understand, did the dates mix up? Weren't you there last year? I thought you went to Europe this spring? as you can see I am intensely procrastinating from my revision ;-)