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Thursday, November 19, 2009

La Cancha



I realized that I talk a lot on my facebook page and also on my blog about going to La Cancha, but I haven´t posted picture of it in a while.  So this is my attempt remedy to that.  La Cancha is our version of Wal-Mart.  It is supposedly the largest outdoor market in South America.  It goes on for acres and acres.  You can get just about anything you need there (unless you need Starbucks coffee, Reese´s Peanut Butter Cups, the Little House on the Prairie series in English, a clean environment, a toy that lasts more than a couple of days, or a day free of smells of urine mixed with rotting veggies and meat that has been hanging out in the hot sun for hours).  Seriously, if we need it we go to La Cancha to buy it whether it´s a computer, furniture, fruit, artwork, paper, dead llama fetuses....we don´t actually need those, but the witches do to perform their rituals and there is a whole section of witches´ supplies.  You can also pick up pigs heads, plastic chairs, exercise equipment, donkey jaws...a whole wheelbarrow full of them, car parts, candy, bushels of coca leaves (used to make cocaine, tea, or just to chew to keep you awake...the Bolivian version of Red Bull).  Did I mention that they have tires, appliances, clothes, blankets, beauty supplies, toys, dishes, birthday supplies, tarot card readings?  Yep, it´s all there and more.  You can have your vegetable oil pumped from a 55 gallon barrel directly into whatever container you bring to hold it.  Didn´t bring anything?  They have extra 2 liter bottles that they find on the street they´ll fill for ya.  In the middle of all this madness there are dentists´ and doctors´ offices.  In fact the doc that delivered Mercy has here office there.  There is also an entire section (think blocks and blocks) of used clothing.  It´s the stuff that doesn´t sell at thrift stores in the States.  It gets shipped down here and that´s where we buy the majority of our clothing.  Just yesterday my mom (who is here for a visit...YEA!) and I went because most of my kids´ jeans have a viewing spot for their knees and they needed some ´new´ ones.  The section I usually go to buy used clothing is the section that all the pictures in this entry are from.  I will post other pics of us Christmas shopping in another section on another day.

See the piles to dig through?  Actually this is relaxing for me and I enjoy it...like going to yard sales. 
Joe on the other hand thinks it is torture.


Want a bootleg DVD?  CD?  MP3? (Just no Little House ones!)


Fresh squeezed orange juice...smells sooo good and helps cover up some of the other
not so good smells.  Notice that she just has 4 glasses? 
After you drink yours she just dumps them
 in the dirty water in that red bucket and voila she´s ready for the next customer.
I wonder why we get so much typhoid and hepatitis here.


This little lady like so many more has had a really hard life. 
Note the ice cream ´truck´ in the background (a cooler on wheels).


Close up of the ice cream ´truck´.


Need some pantyhose?


Socks?  or an empanada or local drink in the background?


Other local drinks...I´ve never been brave enough (or stupid enough...I´m not sure which)  to try these.


In amongst the clothes are some veggies, but the biggest section of produce is in another place. 
I´ll post those pics another time.


You can take a break and eat some lunch at this lady´s ´restaurant´.


Lots of garlic (yum!) and delicious tomatoes too.


Need some spices?  Now that´s what I call bulk...Costco has nothing on us.


I wish these pics were scratch ´n sniff so you could smell the aromas surrounding these scenes.


Need a watch?  Guaranteed to last until you walk away...no, not really that long. 
But seriously, it will probably last a good couple of days.


Me and Jake looking for a dress shirt for him.


Jake checking out the candy.

6 comments:

@ngie said...

This is a great post! Scratch and sniff would be perfect. You make me laugh.

Gallo Pinto2 said...

LOVE it! Might have to send the link to some of my friends!

Oh and you left out hair cutting places! Nothing like paying 5-10 Bs to get a kid's hair cut!

Kimbolivia said...

The cancha is definitely one of those places that, try as you might, you really can't convey the enormity nor the insanity...and yet I love it:)

Two notes- try David the DVD guy in the La Paz section right across from the baby supply store. He speaks English and has more of a variety of series, although he's double the price at 10Bs a disc.

On San Martin, in between Punata and before you reach mercado Calatayud, on the right hand side of the street, you'll find a little candy store who almost always has reese's pb cups for 2Bs. Right now he only has sugar-free ones, but be on the look out. He also usually has Twizzler's, sometimes in the big pack.

Stumbler said...

Wow..... I love markets. The snack van at Worthing market (Wednesdays) gets my hot dog ready (double onions) when they see me coming. :-) The stall I go to most is the cloth one - really cheap. I often buy Lydia (stallholder)a cup of tea and a "yum-yum" as I feel I'm robbing her. (She got me to serve once when she was really busy.)

I'm with you on the market front. Anyone who doesn't like wandering around one for hours (Joe) must be a Philistine! (Well... a Hittite or an Amorite as least!)

REALLY INTERESTING Blog Denise... looking forward to the Christmas one. :-)

Tim.

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