Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Back to Puno Peru

The day started just like most days on my trip, get up, pack up, eat something and leave. The street traffic was heavy as usual in any big city I guess, but I'm getting better on riding in it so I got the the highway out downtown La paz just fine. About half way through I noticed few mini buses going against the traffic flow what the?, a minute later more cars coming right at me. At first I thought that maybe I'm at the wrong side but than both sides had the same thing happening, hmm maybe an accident?.
I got closer to the top of the mountain when I noticed tons of smoke on top of the hill and many people running back down, what the heck is happening?!. I was still making my way through when I started to feel a heavy fumes scratching my throat and seconds later my eyes were burning like hell, o shit it was tear gas and allot of it. I stop immediately to catch my breath and just as quick I rode back down the hill to get away from it. Come to find out it was a students protesting and the whole hell broke loose, the riot cops were everywhere shooting the tear gas into the air. I recorded a short video from the safe distance but I didn't catch much in it. Few minutes later I was told to start going up the hill as it was safe to pass now, I stopped briefly to pull my other camera for good shots but I was told to keep on moving so I only have some pictures done with the hand held. The protest was pretty much done at this time and the only thing that was left is allot of people everywhere and tons of debris on the road. I slowly made my way out the city and finally puled over for some soft drink and few pills to kill my headache. Good times :).
Link to news on that

Traffic going down hill
We were told that its ok to go back up

Its obvious what happen here
The news crew with police protection
More stuff on the road
I can still feel the tear gas here

Lots of riot police
Burning tires on the road

It took me about 3 hours to get through that, the rest of the way to the border was easy as was the crossing it self. I meet a traveler from Colombia on the border so we had a quick chat and I told hime about the whole ordeal and to be careful. Made it to Puno before the dark and tomorrow I will start making my may to Cuzco. I will post the video when it finish uploading to youtube slow internet here .
Border is across the water
Good luck bud, I hope you made it to the city just fine :)

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