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and to riddle that corregidor with bullets, but then I had to remember that I was in a foreign
land, and that I had another mission to fulfil.
Trouble was evidently brewing, for not far from there Indians had assaulted a white man's
place, and two villages I passed through seemed to be completely deserted. However, I knew
that this was not the case, and that the Indians were in their houses, for I noticed one or two
doors gently open and close, just enough to see who might be moving about outside with
horses. This was like the calm before a storm, for I had only been out of these villages a day
or two when trouble began, and later I saw crowds of prisoners being herded into La Paz by
strong, armed escorts. This uprising was the cause of our not eating a bite for nearly forty-
side, I even took both the horses.
We struck the railway line again when we came to Viacha, a town on the altiplano, some
eighteen miles from the capital. The military authorities were very kind to me and made me
comfortable in their quarters, and next day I followed an excellent sandy road that leads as
straight as an arrow towards La Paz, which, being situated in a deep hollow or pan, cannot be
seen from the plain.
Many Indians were moving along this road, driving llamas and burros, which were loaded
with things they were taking to the market. Some men trotted along with heavy loads on their
backs, reminding me of the South American worker ants. The men wear long trousers which
are split open behind as high up as their knees, and use tight-fitting woollen caps with flaps
hanging overtheir ears. Iam told that the object ofthe split trouser legs istobeable todouble
them up over the knees when wading through mud or water.
On and on we trotted along this straight road, and being impatient I thought we were never
going to reach the end that had seemed so near owing to the clearness of the atmosphere. My
and won, and there was La Paz, the place many had said we could never reach. The horses
arched their necks and looked down with ears pricked, and nostrils wide open, for they had
seen the patches of green, things they had not beheld for days. From above, the town looked
like a miniature toy with its quaint churches, steeples, houses and small gardens. On the far
side mountains towered high, and to the south the snow-covered Andean monarch Illimani
glittered intheradiantsunandseemedtobesonearthatonemightbelieve ashotwouldreach
it. I dismounted and watched for a while, and then followed behind some Indians who were
taking a short cut down a narrow, rocky trail.
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