We ended our time in Bolivia by being the proud participants in Ixiamas`parade in honor of Bolivian independence day…Being the only gringos, we definitely stood out, but had a blast just the same. 

 Spirits were high as we prepared for two parades in less than 24 hours.  Tuesday night, the kids marched with their classes and carried homemade torches in the shape of stars, moons and houses.  Our resident artist, Miguel Nacho, made a huge helicopter torch…the star of the parade.  Wednesday morning we got up bright and early and headed to the parade (wearing our new SIFAT Bolvia T-shirts).  We marched and marched and marched and marched and marched.  It was a tiring but fun morning. 

After the march we headed back to the internado for a fun day of playing and saying goodbye`s.  Because school was canceled for wednesday Katie and I were able to spend the whole afternoon enjoying the kids.  Some of the girls prepared a huge feast in honor of the day.  We had fried pork, Bolivian potato salad, rice, and chocolate cake.  It was quite a feast.  The fun ended when we had to say goodbye.  It is sad to leave new friends, but I am incredibly thankful for my new brothers and sisters in Bolivia.  All of our lives are richer because of it. 

A cancelled flight, and several delays later we made it to LaPaz to be greeted by Bully and Angel.  They got us safely to our hotel and we set out exploring.  We were able to enjoy the city Saturday, but were left stuck in the hotel on Sunday.  Sunday was election day, and NOTHING is allowed to be open.  It was very quite in Bolivia on Sunday.  This morning Katie and I visited the Tiwanaku ruins and learned a lot about the amaryan culture.  We are finally back at the hotel and ready for a good night`s rest!  We have to be at the airport super early in the morning (4a.m.!). 

Once we get back in the states, we will post some pictures of all the work done over the course of the summer!

 Dios Bendiga!

Hermana Olivia