June 17-18, 2007
I decided that my next trek would be the Taquesi Trail, a three-day trek that goes from the mountains to the yungas. I still couldn't find anyone interested in going with me, so I'm going to go alone. I bought food, fuel, a topographical map of the region, and other supplies for the trek, and took care of other maintenance issues in preparation.
The logistics of getting to the trailhead proved quite difficult. I had to find a bus to take me to Ventilla, which is probably just a little community in the middle of nowhere. However, buses that go from La Paz to anywhere other than another big city don't leave from the bus station. Instead, they just show up at some random intersection and take off whenever they get full. I got an idea of where the buses for Ventilla left from in a guidebook, but just finding that place was tough. The city is a maze with no discernible grid of roads. Once in the area, nobody would tell me "no" when I asked if they knew where the buses were. Instead, everyone sent me on wild goose chases that left me more confused than when I began. (The inability to say "no," or "I'm sorry" is typical of Latin American culture, by the way.) After hours of searching and asking, I found a hardware store owner who seemed confident that the buses showed up at his intersection at 6:30 AM and usually left by 7:45. I'll go there early tomorrow, hope the buses are there, and hope even more that they aren't all full.