Saturday, 11 August 2007

Blowing Up Barbie

The following entry contains graphic details of a highly dangerous day which those of a nervous disposition may find disturbing!

This is the mine. It is at the base of a mountin that shadows Potosi.
Potosi used to be the richest city in the world back in the 16 hundreds, this was because of the silver in the mine. But most of that is all gone now.
The mine is a very dangerous place with loads of gases floating around including Aspestos, Mercury, and Sillica. So most of the miners die before they have even worked in there for ten years. We were OK but it helped to wear a bandana.

When we were in the mine, lots of carts of rocks would go past at quite some pace, and as there was not much room either side, so you had to watch out!

The miners still follow and old belief about worshiping the Devil. This is because as they are under ground and the Devil is there too, all of the minerals belong to him, so if it has been a good week they have to drink (96% alcohol) to pay back the Devil. On the other hand if it has been a bad week they also have to drink to ask for the next week to be a good one.

That stick that I am holding very menacinglly, is Dynamite! The miners use this alot, to get to new sections of the mine. What I thought was funny, is that you just went down to a shop to buy it, and anyone can! It is (appanently) the only place in the world that you are allowed to bye it legelly.

At the end of the tour all of the dynamite we decided to buy was prepared by are guide. The only differance was, that with ours the guide stuck Barbie to it! I was sooo pleased that finally I would be able to get my revenge on those plastic things!
Then the fuse was lit and there seemed to be no hurry about putting it at a safe I thought it would be fun to hold a live bomb, so I took it off the guide and asked dad to take a picture, at this point I was very scared because I could see the smoke coming closer and closer to the bag containing the bomb. Unfortunatly the picture didnt come out very good so there was no point to put it on the blog.

That is the 96% alcohol drink that the miners drink. An Irish guy in are group bought it (trust the Irish) so I took the oppertunity to have a taste and get a picture! It is distgusting and burned your stomach as it goes down! BUT...just the fact that is was 96% alcohol was enough to enjoy it!