Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Chicken Or The Egg

I had everything I needed to get this process going, jumped in a taxi and was rearing to go. Come on Embassy don't fail me now. I found out a bit later that I was the third Canadian that had their passport stolen over Carnival.  I don't know why they told me that, maybe to make me feel better. Either way lets get this show on the road.

All my documents checked out but there was a problem. With the Emergency Transit Document I needed an intinerary which would be printed on that document. I needed to book my flight. There was a small travel agency in the main floor (crazy ironic) plus a bank where I would need to deposit the $81 dollars. Off I went. Now I am an online booking kind of  guy. I like booking my own, well everything online. Its fast and easy and I see my options. Kind of like online banking. If I actually walk into a brick and mortar bank I get real confused. Anyways I needed to book a flight and only had one option. I sat with the agent for about 30 minutes going over various flights and dates. Air Canada god bless you had a flight for just over $2200. I passed. She was great and found various flights with the cheapest going through Miami for $900 (are you listening Air Canada). The caveat to that was she needed a passport number. Up to the embassy I go where they inform me that they can not give me a number until I have a flight booked. I needed a beer or six.

I worked with the travel agent and we agreed going through the states, even though it was cheaper was not an option. A little more work on her part and she found me a great flight. La Paz to Santa Cruz Bolivia which is actually South and West, the exact opposite direction I was heading, but it was only a 45 minute flight. The from Santa Cruz to San Salvador, El Salvador then Toronto. Leave 8 30 am, arrive in Toronto 9 50 pm...all for the same price as the short haul through Miami. I did not need a passport number so I plopped down the credit card and yelled SOLD! She was not amused.

The Embassy had everything it needed and all it had to do was call my references, which they did later that day, confirmed by each of then letting me know. Now its just a waiting game. It was a sunny and warm day and decided to walk. I had keep track of street names and landmarks when in the taxis and the way back was easy enough. What a good decision. I found great side streets, street markets and small parks. Added to the amazing old buildings (some pot marked with bullet holes from the dark times) when I was finding the Police station and finally the police report experience I actually had a good time. Now don't get me wrong, I was stressed, angry at times, frustrated and figured I was going to have to move to Bolivia more than once. Everything that had to be done was done and I was in La Paz. Thing could have been a lot worse. I could have been stranded in worse places. This was still Bolivia man!!

No comments: