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Bolivian Mail System

Patience.......lots of it!


Don’t mail me any packages!

My sweet sister mailed me a couple of packages over a month ago. We have been tracking them and trying to figure out where they were. We finally tracked them into Santa Cruz, so yesterday a friend from school was at the Post Office downtown and asked about them. They told her they were at a different Post Office on the 2nd ring, and she sent me a photo of the address. So, just for a little more adventure (cause I don’t get enough), I headed out after school to see if I could retrieve the packages. They don't have mailboxes or mailmen here to deliver mail, so everything needs to be picked up.

I took a taxi and he dropped me off in the middle of a neighborhood, with a small building. I almost asked him to wait, but I figured it would take a while. With my little Spanish speaking skills, and the help of some people that spoke a little English I found I was in the right place. However, the window to obtain the paperwork was closed. The sign said it was open until 5:00, so I inquired at the other door and the lady came out and changed the sign to 3:00. Yep… the hours changed right then. Acting dumb and not being able to speak the language well helped me, I think. They somehow told me that I had to come back at 9 am tomorrow and I told them I couldn’t because I was traveling to La Paz, and besides that I am a teacher and can’t get off work. By then, I think they were either feeling sorry for me, or didn’t want me to think Bolivia was crazy. In fact, someone who spoke English told me that Bolivia is crazy and asked me what I was doing in Boliva, and I told them I had not idea and that I was crazy. We had a good laugh.
They asked for my ID and I handed over the copy of my passport, cause my real passport is who knows where in the process of getting a visa. They said they had one package and I told them two, and somehow they found another. Makes me wonder what would have happened had I not said 2. I had to sign for them, and then I waited another 10 minutes while they helped other people. I honestly think they were trying to figure out if they should charge me for them. I did see some people had paid, and I heard they probably would charge me a tax on it.
Finally a guy opened one of the packages, poked around in it and handed them over.
Mucho Gracias! And I was out of there.
Nothing, nothing, nothing is easy in Boliva!

Posted by dianeski4 13:13 Archived in Bolivia

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