Published: January 9th 2011January 4th 2011
Dnes nas cakala najvacsia "atrakcia" Potosi a to cim sa toto mesto preslavilo - strieborne bane v hore nazyvanej Cerro Rico. Cerro Rico je najvacsim naleziskom striebra na svete, teda vlastne bolo pretoze vacsina je vytazena. Zacalo sa tu tazit uz v 16 storoci a odhaduje sa ze pri tom zahynulo okolo 8 milionov ludi, hlavne indianov alebo africanov, ktory boli nuteni tu pracovat. V sucasnosti v baniach pracuje okolo 8000 ludi z toho vysoky pocet deti, stale sa tu tazi striebro ale aj ine kovy. Podmienky su stale stredoveke a tito ludia sa vacsinou nedozivaju vysokeho veku - pracuje sa bez akychkolvek ochrannych pomocok. Plat, ako nam prezradil nas sprievodca, je priemerny, hoci niektorym sa postasti zbohatnut. Prehliadka sa zacala prezlecenim do slusiveho kompletu doplneneho helmou so svetlom. Potom sme sa este zastavili na trhu kupit nejake drobnosti pre banikov - sladke napoje a koku a tiez dynamit pre nas. Vchod do bane, v nasom pripade Rosario, vyzeral tak nejak podla mojich predstav - maly a cierny. Zo zaciatku sme chodili pomerne sirokymi chodbami, tie sa vsak postupne zacali snizovat a niekolkokrat sme sa museli predierat po styroch. Za pomoci rebrikov sa presli niekolko urovni. V niektorych chodbach boli kolaje
a mi sme sa kazdu chvilu museli vyhybat obrovskym vozikom, ktore vyprazdnene vazia pol tony. Obcas bol medzi vozikom a stenou priestor akurat pre jedneho cloveka a par krat sa my naozaj ulavilo ked vozik konecne presiel popri mne. Steny chodieb boli casto pokryte roznymi farebnymi mineralmi, ktorych nazvy sme si povecsine nezapametali /med, kobalt, sira/, ale videli sme nejake strieborne zili. V baniach bolo velmi prasno, obcas zima, obcas teplo na zadusenie, na zemi spinava voda. Tiez sme navstivili Tia, to je boh, ktory podla povery vlastny vsetko striebro a treba si ho udobrovat - kokou, cigaretami alebo alkoholom. V baniach sme stravili okolo troch hodin a vidiet svetlo na konci tunelu bola ulava. Praca tychto ludi je naozaj tazka, my sme tam stravili kratky cas len chodenim a dalo to zabrat. Na zaver nam este nas sprievodca odpalil uz spominany dynamit a celkom nas prekvapilo co dokaze taky maly kusok.
Today we were going to see the main "atraction" of Potosi, and place that made this place famous - silver mines in a mountain called Cerro Rico. Cerro Rico is the biggest single place to find silver in the world, or to be correct was because most
of it was already gone. The mining here started in 16th century, and it is estimated that around 8 million people died here, mostly indians and africans, who were forced to work here. At the moment, there are around 8000 people working here, quite a lot of kids too. They are still mining silver but also other minerals. Working conditons are middleaged and those poeple die quite young - they work without any protection. Our tour started with putting "nicely" fitting uniforms. Then we stoped on a local market where we bought some gifts for miners - fizzy drinks, crucial coca leaves and also some dynamite for us. The entry into the mine, in our case called Rosario, looked as I imagined it - dark and small. In the beggining we walked through quite wide tunnels, but it soon changed and sometimes we were even forced on all four. With the help of ladders we passed through a few levels. There were rails in some of the tunnels and every now and on we had to give a way to the carrieges pushed by miners. Sometimes there was just a space for one person between a wall and the trolley
and few times I felt relieved a when they finally passed. Walls of the tunnels were covered with different colourful minerals, and we also saw some silver wains. There was unbelievably dusty there, sometimes cold, sometimes hot to die and often a dirty water on the ground. We also visited Tio - god of this mountain, who according to the legend owns all the silver and needs to be looked after - coca is a nr.1 gift, cigarettes or alcohol. We spend around three hours inside and to see a light in the end fo the tunnel was a relief. Miners job is a hard one, we spend a short time there just with walking but for us it was still quite an effort. In the end our guide detonated already mentioned dynamite for us and we were surprise what such a little thing could do...
There are more photos below