During my last “vacation”, it was hardly rest and relaxation.  I could not pass up an opportunity to witness and be a part of history.  A family friend invited me along the campaign, where I met a who’s who of Bolivian politicians, hearing and seeing things from the inside.  From sun-up to sun-down, if it wasn’t a radio interview, an unexpected trip to Evo’s house, or watching a live debate, the adrenaline of politics and campainging was something that I could grow to crave. I grew a bit more idealistic, but also planted my feet firmly on the floor because of some politics as usual. The December 2005 elections were a hopeful step forward for Bolivia, but now everyone’s optimism if wearing thin.  “I expected more,” are words that I hear from my friends who live in the Zona Sud of Cochabamba and enthusiastically voted for Evo nine months ago. The second day I arrived, I visited the site where the Brigada Parlimentaria de Cochabamba (Congressmen and women from Cochabamba from all parties) meets on off days of Congress. I had expressed an interest in meeting the new Bolivian ambassador to the U.S. because I am on the Board of Directors of an organization in Northern Virginia called Escuela Bolivia.  It would be great to strengthen our relationship with the Embassy, as we have had a strong relationship with every Ambassador regardless of political affiliation.  When I was introduced to another Congressmen who was good friends with the new ambassador, there was a little bit of suspectibility.  Who can blame them, as party members are still looking for espacios to be accomodated?  I certainly was not looking for a job in this administration, but I did not want to give them the wrong idea.  So this time around, I really made it my vacation. Sleeping in until 10 am, eating so many tasty dishes here in Cochabamba (where they say you can eat 6 times in one day), watching movies at the Cine Center and just hanging out with family and friends. A change from my time in Bolivia last December.


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