Despedidas, Fêtes de départ, Last party : En photos, Fotografías, With pictures mardi, Juil 1 2008 

Voici le lien pour les photos de mes fêtes d’avant départ :

Aquí el vínculo para las fotografías de mis despedidas :

Here the link for the pictures of my party before I go :

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=58897&l=34e54&id=752741286

Huayna Potosí 2 (6088 m) : En photos, Fotografías, With pictures mardi, Juil 1 2008 

Voici le lien pour les photos de 2e randonnée au Huayna, Potosí (6088 m) :

Aquí el vínculo para las fotografías de segunda subida al Huayna, Potosí (6088 m) :

Here the link for the pictures of second time at the Huayna, Potosí (6088 m) :

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=58894&l=4ea42&id=752741286

Cobija : En photos, Fotografías, With pictures mardi, Juin 17 2008 

Voici le lien pour les photos de quelques jours de fête à Cobija :

Aquí el vínculo para las fotografías algunos días de fiestas en Cobija :

Here the link for the pictures of a few party in Cobija :

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=56607&l=9cfaf&id=752741286

Camping a la Laguna Encantada / Jach’a Huiara 5 (5108 m) : En photos, Fotografías, With pictures vendredi, Juin 6 2008 

Voici le lien pour les photos d’une fin de semaine entre ami(e)s suivi d’une petite randonnée :

Aquí el vínculo para las fotografías de una fin de semana entre amigos(as) con una pequeña caminata en montaña:

Here the link for the pictures of a camping week-end with friends and a small mountain hike:

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=54965&l=a07fa&id=752741286

Sucre (3rd time) and Potosí mardi, Avr 8 2008 

From 14th to 17th of February I had to travel to Sucre. The reason of that was simple, people were asking for me. If you remember well (if not, just check out the blog “Job’s stories” section) a part of my job is to help some cooperatives in Chuquisaca that produces pork and chicken by doing market study. A few months ago, when I got here, those 2 productions were just beginning and it didn’t have that much information to help he in my work. However, since then situation changed and the responsible of those coop. wanted to meet me to pass me all the information that is requested to do a better job. Also, a the last minute, my boss asked me to help him by preparing a 1,5 days formation on good governance and democratic management in cooperative. That formation was part of a formation plan for AGROCENTRAL, the central of agriculture coop. in Chuquisaca. After preparing the formation I had to participate in it as a formatter. So, it was really interesting experience ‘coz I never before did this king of formation, I never did formation in Spanish and it was the first time that I was working directly with the members of coop. So, I say it again, it was really a nice experience and the people told that I was not that bad!

Also, I did enjoy that opportunity (my last one there I think) to pass another week-end in Sucre to visit what I couldn’t see yet and go visit Potosí that is at 2,5 hours from the capital city. This was my original plan, but since a damned salad in a café put me really sick on that Sunday, I just when to visit Potosí and now I hope to have another occasion to go to Sucre and finish to see what I wanted. So let’s concentrate on Potosí.

Potosí, during the Spanish colony, was for a time the biggest city of the world in term of population. Also, the legend says that the Spanish did dig so much silver from the mountain beside the city that they could build a silver bridge to Europe! So, Potosí is miner city and the highest city of the Earth (4200 m). Also, it’s a colonial city with a lot of building and church that has more than 200, 300, 400 and even 500 years old!!! Witch is bad about Potosí is that since the mining industry is down, the city is getting poorer. So I went there to gather with 2 others cooperant friend, visit with them a mine and the first place in Bolivia where they began to do the money, la Casa de Moneda. That building was impressive but what was the most impressive is the visit of a miner cooperative. That visit was not king of tour that you can describe as tourism ‘coz those king of mine are so exploited as it was in the colony that it is hard to see. The miners’ conditions of working (and we should say life ‘coz a miner can work until 16 hours a day) are terrible. For nothing I would go back there as a tourist. Not that I want to escape from that reality but more for respect for those miners that we are going to see their life. I say that ‘coz really I’m happy that I could have seen the reality of the miners that we try to help. I say tray because we are trying right now to develop some miner’s project.

So, this travel was really rich in experience and I think it will stay as one of the best on a professional and a personal way.

Here you’ll find the pictures : http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=47233&l=722ba&id=752741286.

Where is Charlie? No! Where are the coop.? lundi, Avr 7 2008 

Well I didn’t give you news about my work for a long time so now it’s time for some update. First, since March 29th I’m officially a consultant and I’m glad about it. But what does that change? Well, except my salary, not that much! Really, even if I have that new contract my work didn’t change. So, I’m still doing the organizational diagnostic of some organisations here. Recently I finished those of CONCOBOL (Bolivian’s Confederation of Cooperatives) and FEBOCAC (Bolivian’s Federation of Cooperatives of Credit). So, on this side I have only one more to do with a central of coop. that produce quinua. That diagnostic is really more interesting ‘coz it’s an organization more organised than the 2 firsts organisations that I was working for and it’s also closer to the base. Sadly, work doesn’t go that fast since I’m well implicated in the national diagnostic of the coop. that we are also doing (more details down in this text).

Then, what am I doing? Well, like at the beginning of my contract with the oregano, I still have 2 others market study to do for AGROCENTRAL, the coop.’s central of agriculture of the department of Chuquisaca, for 2 new projects : pork’s and chicken’s production. What I like from those market study is that there is nothing to do with what we use to learn at university (useless blab bla bla about a market). No, those studies are really connected with the ground searching to who is buying, at what price, in what quantity, with witch king of characteristics, etc. So I like this king of work and I’ll do it as soon as I finish my work with the diagnostics.

Finally, I’m implicated in the national diagnostic of coop. that we are doing. To understand that work I have to come back a little bit in the past. In April 2007 we began our new 5 years program in Bolivia. In this new program it is planed to work with the representation’s organisations of coop. (like central, federation and confederation) and the government (true de General direction of cooperatives). So, with those actors and during this first year we planed to evaluate the whole coop. movement in Bolivia to orientate our work for the next 4 years. In this sense we are doing right now a diagnostic of all the coop. of the country. What does that mean? Well, an team of consultant are doing visits to all the coop. in all the department of Bolivia. Myself, I’m visiting all the coop. in the departments of Pando and Beni. Those 2 departments are the 2 regions less developed of Bolivia on the transportation infrastructure. It is also for that reason that those 2 departments have less coop. and population than the other regions of the country. So I went once in Beni to begin the work from March 23rd to 30th (here is the link for the pictures : http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=46427&l=03310&id=752741286) and this Tuesday April 8 I’m going to Cobija, Pando, to do the work there and than finish what I began in Beni. I should leave for 15 days.

I really like this work since it put me in relation with the basic organisation, the coop., and that I have the opportunity to chat with the members and the administrators of those organisations. It really changes from my work in La Paz and also gives a chance to visit some places that even the Bolivians don’t use to know!

Silluntinkara treck 2 and Cochabamba lundi, Mar 31 2008 

Last week, during Ester time, I did enjoy my week day vacation to do solo a 1,5 days trekking in the wild (in the sense that there is no one) and so beautiful region of the Yungas. It was so relaxing ‘coz after I was living for a week mission in the Beni (a department at the North of the country where road infrastructure are pretty poor) to visit all the cooperatives that we could find there. However, I’ll write soon another article on that story. So for the trekking, even if a friend of Chile was staying in my apartment for 2 weeks, I decided to go alone and enjoy a walk at my rhythm full of loneliness and coming back in peace with myself. It was great to get quiet also after losing my routine with that friend in vacation! Here are some pictures of my walk : http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=46424&l=0de85&id=752741286.

Also, I put you this link to see some pictures of Cochabamba when I went there in last February. Those pictures are from my Chilean friend ‘coz we were together there and since I didn’t take any pictures she passed to me : http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=46419&l=da785&id=752741286.

Mountains’ stories mardi, Mar 11 2008 

It’s not ‘coz I don’t give you a lot of news that I stop my mountains’ climbing activities. Really, since carnival I had the chance to climb 4 mountains and to have a walk in the Cumbre until where begins the El Chorro’s trekking (here for more details). Unfortunately I don’t have any pictures but I can tell you that I went for a second time to climb the mountain without name (4800 m, February 9th) and that I went for my second and third time at the Quinkillosa (around 5000 m, February 10th and 23rd). Also, the third time that we went there it was funny ‘coz at the top of the mountain we had snow until the knees and were snow fighting like kids! After that, on March 2nd, I went to walk in the Cumbre where we were in a snow storm… We couldn’t see more than 30 m in front of us! And finally, last week-end I went back for my fourth time to the Jach’a Huira (5100 m) with only one of my good Bolivian friend that I clomb with since the beginning. Even if it was the fourth time at that mountain, it was different ‘coz we could go at our rhythm since we were not with inexperienced people.

Rock climbing vendredi, Mar 7 2008 

Last Saturday (March first) I had the chance and the big pleasure to go rock climbing for my first time in Bolivia. Even if I have my equipment since last December, I didn’t have the opportunity yet to go rock climbing. It was so fun and I love so much climbing (I didn’t climb for a year but before that I was doing it in a gym for 6 months twice a week) that for sure I’ll go back a few times. And now, knowing that I’m staying until July, and that Bolivia is such a wonderful country for rock climbing, I’ll receive in a few weeks all the equipment that I miss to be independent (as a rope for example). So, let’s climb and have fun!

New contract… but as a consultant now! vendredi, Mar 7 2008 

Yep! Another time I’ll stay longer than supposed in Bolivia (even if my girlfriend begins to get tired of that!… and I totally understand her). So, a few weeks ago my 2 boss asked if I could stay another 3 months but not as inter in a CIDA (Canadian International Development Agency) but as a consultant!!!! (I remind you that I’m here as an intern in a CIDA program for young professional that never worked for salary in his field outside of the country).Well, even if they offered to me that new contract a few weeks ago, nothing was official ‘coz we were waiting to get confirmed other founds from the CIDA, answer that we got lately. So now everything is official so in April I’ll be a consultant in cooperative development and commercial development (it’s the title I guess I’ll have but you know that titles don’t mean that much!). I’m very happy and for first time in my life I’ll get pay as my diploma should be. Also, for the first time in my life I won’t be anymore in the poverty’s statistics! And I’ll even be able to pay my dept!!!

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