She Was Not Ammused
Incensed and seeking retribution, Melgarejo forced the ambassador to drink the entire bowl of chocolate. He next tied the ambassador onto the back of a donkey, facing backwards, and then paraded him three times around La Paz’s main square. He then sent him packing to London. I’m thinking at this point that this may just be the origin of the phrase “ass backwards”, but this is entirely my own speculation.
Thus ignored in Commonwealth circles and due to circumstances both inside and outside of Bolivia, the country has become somewhat of the doormat to South America. Since that time, poor little Bolivia has lost about half its territory. The root causes of Bolivia’s, at least partial, erasure from the map has been its curse of valuable resources: rubber, oil, and guano. Everyone wanted a piece of the resources and Bolivia gets stomped. Guano, incidentally, is the excrement of birds or bats and while this doesn’t appear too desirable a resource today guano was the most important source of nitrates for gunpowder and other explosives up until just before World War I.
Bolivia Must Have Really Big Cereal Boxes
Furthermore, Bolivia has more than 2,900 animal species, including 398 mammals, over 1,400 birds (70% of all birds known in the world), 204 amphibians, 277 reptiles, and 635 fish (all freshwater, of course). In addition, there are more than 3,000 types of butterfly.
It is estimated that Bolivia has 5.4 million cubic tonnes of lithium which represents 50% to 70% of world reserves. This light metal is used to make high-capacity batteries used in iPads and iPhones and electric cars and such. The government so far has resisted destroying this unique natural landscape and has not allowed large scale mining of the lithium to meet the increasing world demand for us to make a couple more unnecessary cell phone calls and send a few more trivial text messages each day.Exciting Sports
Bolivia has a highly developed sporting program. One of the most popular sporting events is wrestling. Bolivian wrestling is not like the phony North American choreographed event. Bolivian wrestlers are highly skilled professional athletes. Words cannot describe the beauty, grace, and finely honed skills of these world class athletes. You just have to watch:
High in La Paz
A Scenic Drive Down a Historic Highway
Bolivia and Paraguay Go Postal
Of course, this type of postal confrontation could not be tolerated lying down and Bolivia responded decisively in 1928 with a stamp showing a map of Bolivia with an area clearly named Chaco Boliviano. To further bring their point across, three more stamps with the same map were issued in 1930.
A philatelist’s arms race was now in order and Paraguay responded with a bigger and badder set of five stamps issued in 1932. The map on these stamps is again labelled Chaco Paraguayo and no further stress the point each stamp carried the phrase "Ha sido, es y sera", or in English "Has been, is, and will be".
Not to be outdone, Bolivia issued two even larger sets of stamps in 1935. The first set, consisting of 14 stamps, each with an identical design, shows a map of Bolivia on which is marked Chaco Boliviano. The second set was for airmail postage, and again the main design feature of these stamps is a map of Bolivia, and the only regional name to appear is the Chaco Boliviano.
Rurrenabaque and San Miguel
|Rurrenabaque and the Beni River|
|The village of San Miguel|
Interesting Local Inhabitants
Jayne loves animals and nature and in the jungle village she will have the opportunity to see and experience some of the flora and fauna of the world’s largest rainforest. I will introduce to you a few of them.
Interesting Friendly Insects That Want To Meet You
The woman that is teaching at the village right now has been introduced to a few hundred of the local insects. As such she has offered Jayne the advice not to stay in hut number 1 as there is an infestation of bedbugs. My guess is that Jayne will heed these words of wisdom and not meet these fascinating creatures, but not to worry there are many other interesting local insects around. (Note: It seems that bedbugs can't count as the huts other than number 1 were also partying spots for these little guys.)
The local species of this spider is widely considered the most venomous. Its venom contains a potent neurotoxin that causes loss of muscle control and breathing, resulting in paralysis and eventual asphyxiation. In addition, the venom causes intense pain and inflammation. That sounds to me as bad enough but the venom of the spider can cause priapism (really big erections) in humans. Erections resulting from the bite are said to be uncomfortable and can last for many hours and lead to impotence if one survives. I think this may be why all the teachers going to Bolivia are women.
Interesting and Adventurous Fish
The black caiman is one of the largest reptiles in the world. It is the largest predator in the Amazon basin and the largest member of the alligator family. Adult black caimans are 10–14 feet in length, with some old ones larger than 16 feet. Unconfirmed sources report that the black caiman can grow to 20 feet or more. Their teeth are designed to grab but not rip, so they generally try to swallow their food whole after drowning their pitiless prey.
The jaguar usually attacks from a target's blind spot and this cat's ambushing abilities are considered, by both indigenous people and field researchers, to have no equal in the animal kingdom. The prey is probably dead before it is even aware there is a jaguar in the neighbourhood.
Interesting and Colourful Amphibians
The Golden Poison Dart Frog is estimated to contain about one milligram of this poison, enough to kill about 10,000 mice or between 10 and 20 humans, or two African bull elephants, whichever comes along first.