Thursday, August 28, 2008


Walking along the streets in El Alto, one finds a lot of people doing different activities. For example, there a lot of young people working as shoeshiners. They are generally on the main streets of Ceja which is the central part of El Alto. Ceja is the place where people changes buses, to go to La Paz city , so it is the perfect place to offer a shoeshining service.

Shoeshiners are divided in groups, each one has twenty of thirthy members. These are formed generally by young men although there are adults too. I asked one of them about girls or women and he told me that they don´t accept women as part of their organization and probably it is the same in the other groups too. It is mainly a male activitiy although in La Paz, there are some women working in this activity.

Monday, August 11, 2008


August 10 was important for the bolivian people. We had the first Referendum in the history of Bolivia. It was to answer whether we agreed or not with the policies of Presidente Evo Morales Ayma and Vicepresidente Alvaro Linera. In my neighborhood in District 1 in El Alto, this voting process was very quiet. I voted in a school two blocks from my house. We generally vote in schools and in each one there is a different number of Voting tables. Each voting table is numbered and it has a variable number of voters registered. Voting process starts 8:00 and lasts eight hours. When a voting table opens later, it should complete the hours indicated.

Once the voting process ends, members of the electoral jury start counting the votes manually in presence of the public. Each vote is registered on the blackboard so that everybody can see it as shown in the picture.

In this case, President Morales, won. It is said that he received about 61% of approval in the country which is a percentage better than the one he received in 2005, when he was elected as President.

Following the steps of my ancestors

To the Amazon