We drive north-west across the Altiplano. We finally made the climb to El Alto and left La Paz. The area is barren, but many people have built their homes in the middle of nowhere. I wonder how they give their address. Behind the barren hills we can make out the snow-capped giants of the Andes and the glittering of the great lake on the horizon.
We haven’t seen green for a long time. The world consists of different shades of brown. At the edge of the road we see cows and old cholitas. Incomplete houses far and wide, but with no obvious prospect of completion.
Soon we reach Lake Titicaca and we follow the shore, which is lushly overgrown with the typical reeds. I saw on the map that at Huatajata there is a Kon Tiki Museum on the way. I want to see that and so I motivate Sara and Leon to come with me.
The museum is run by a man with his cholita. The gentleman proudly introduces himself as the son of a member of the crew who once accompanied Thor Heyerdal on his expedition on the Kon Tiki reed boat. He proudly shows photos of the sea voyage and also information about the further voyages with the boats Ra I and II as well as the Tigris. It’s exciting to listen to him. He himself built numerous models of the expedition ships and offers them for sale.
While I’m trying to translate all the stories for Sara, she has her own challenge with four cholitas offering her blankets, jackets, scarves and more for sale. Leon is interested in fashion again, nor in stories, but instead points to the chickens running around in the yard, which he would like to play with.
The man has even built a large rush boat out on the shore, which I’m allowed to look at. It is based on the models that served as a model for the Kon Tiki and the other boats. Some experiences and each one richer with an alpaca jacket, we drive a short distance further and rest at the end of a quay with a fantastic sunset over the lake
Just in time before dark, another large rush boat arrives. The captain and Leon wave at each other. Some fishermen also come by in small boats and return our greetings. The night is crystal clear and the stars shine in droves in the sky. The only sound is the cackling of the coots. Even if we don’t know it yet, this is the calm before the storm, because the next day the continuation of our journey is about to fail.