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Published: April 27th 2007
View across the Sucre valley from the Cal Orckó dino park,complete with wee concrete monster!
The last few days here in Sucre have been lovely. We spent Wednesday wandering around the city centre for over 5 hours picking up school supplies with the help of Alex, our guide from yesterday, who knew pretty much where to go and could help us with negociating a good price. By the end of the day, we had amassed 2 atlases, 4 thick algebra books, 4 dictionaries, an introduction to Maths for primary kids and a set of the first four Harry Potter books. The Harry Potter books weren't actually on the list the teachers gave us but I wanted to donate something fun too and being a big Harry Potter fan, I just couldn't help myself!
The day wasn't all work and no play however, as we stopped off in the central market for a fresh fruit smoothie for just 2 Bs apiece followed by a really cheap chorizo lunch upstairs for the boys. Chorizo is a type of big spicy pork sausage and I have to admit that if I hadn't been a vegetarian, I might have been tempted too as they looked and smelled really good. Normally we wouldn't eat in a marketplace as hygiene
Jude gets as close as she can to the famous dinosaur footprints. Not so close really then.
levels can be questionable but here in Sucre, they seem to have got it sussed.
On Thursday, we had planned to go to the dinosaur park to see the dinosaur footprints, something that Sucre is famous for. Unfortunately we couldn't find the Dino Truck ticket saleswoman and contented ourselves with a bit more of a walk around this very pretty city. In the evening, we hunted around for somewhere nice to eat but found the prices to be quite high (by Bolivian standards that is) everywhere we went. In the end, we opted to go back to the steakhouse where we went with Alex after our Maragua tour and we were chuffed to find that not only did the staff there recognise us but they remembered that I was a veggie too! Glynn tucked in to yet another juicy steak - he swears it's the best he's ever had- and vowed never to order a steak in an English restaurant ever again.
On Thursday, the sunny weather came to an abrupt end and was replaced by a bitter cold that chilled us to the bone. On the plus side, it was still dry outside so we wrapped up
Look carefully and you'll see 3 sets of tracks heading in different directions.
warm and made another attempt to get to the Dinosaur Park. This time we managed to find the ticket lady and for 5 Bs each, we secured ourselves a ride on the Dino Truck to Cal Orck'o where the footprints are located. On the truck, we got chatting to a bunch of other tourists while we waited to get moving. Alas there was demonstration in progess (there's almost one a day here) in the main square and the protesters had blocked all the roads in and out. After about an hour of waiting in the cold, we finally got going and although the ride was fun, the wooden planks that made up the seats were really uncomfortable on the bumpy road.
At the park, we paid our 30 Bs entrance fee and had just over an hour to check everything out before we had to head back. This was an hour less than we should have had thanks to the demonstration, but it was actually just about enough. We started off being shown a video about dinosaurs that was none other than the BBC's Walking With Dinosaurs. Next we moved on and up to the footprints viewing area. The
Apparently these tracks were made by amother and baby diplodocus.
footprints themselves are quite interesting and pretty cool although it was disappointing to be so far away from them (at least 150 metres). Still, it is incredible to think that real life dinosaurs walked across a muddy patch of land all those millions of years ago and you can still see it today.
The rest of the dino park is made up of some very, very realistic looking models of various dinosaurs including a very ferocious looking T-Rex that had me shaking with fear once again (you may question why someone with a dinosaur phobia would subject themselves to this and I wonder this myself!). We also got to walk right underneath a life-size brontosaurus (I think that's what it was) which, had it been real, could easily have squashed a whole person under one of its giant feet. The dino park was actually a lot of fun to walk around - even for someone as phobic as me - but it would have been a lot better if we had been able to get closer to the real footprints.
In the evening, we had another visit from Alex to pick up all the school stuff we had
Not a real one, thank God!
bought and to bring us a goodbye gift. Can you believe I am now the proud owner of my very own dinosaur egg? Maybe this is just the aversion therapy I need! It's quite big and heavy and although we can't be certain it really is a dinosaur egg, I can't for the life of me imagine what else it could be. You be the judge - check out the photo and tell us what you think! We sat up chatting to Alex for ages before finally having to say farewell to the newest member of the ever-growing International Network of Friends.
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