Sunday, November 06, 2005

It's a kinda magic...

Life here has a certain magical quality to it which I don't think I have ever experienced anywhere else.

When a house is being built, before any worker accepts to do the job, an offering must be made to the Pachamama (Mother Earth), often in the form of a buried llama foetus (for sale in the Witches' Market called La Sagarnaga) - and sometimes even human remains! Women are not allowed into mines because they are bad luck (perhaps the same way women were thought to be bad luck on ships back in the day when the British ruled the world). Your future can be read in the palm of your hand, in coca leaves, and in tea.

It's hard to explain, and it goes beyond the few examples I give. Things work which shouldn't work; every school has a uniform; birthday parties include piƱatas, magicians, and party bags for guests... Every day is full of hope and of enchantment. This may be the "developing" world, but that doesn't mean developed nations couldn't learn a whole bunch from the way things are here.


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