We were swerving in and out of the midnight traffic down one of Cochabamba´s many thousand calles. The conversation hung in the air as the cool night breeze enveloped the charming little town in the mountains. People say that there´s something about this town, enveloped on all 4 sides by beautiful mountains, that makes it instantly feel like home. It feels cosy.
I however, was not paying attention to any such tripe. The seat covers of Manfred´s car were nearly torn to shreds, because I was fixated by the seat of my pants, white knuckled, praying to Ram, Krishna, Allah, Jesus, Santa Claus, whoever was out there - just to get me out alive.
Manfred meanwhile, was harbouring no such thoughts. He was wrestling with the steering wheel, texting, and talking about today's chilly weather with total ease.
Now, Manfred has been practicing Martial Arts for about 18 years now. You'd think that a guy who had kicked more butt than Clint Eastwood would find midnight multitasking relatively easy.
...and he probably does.
There was only one problem...
He was drunker than a Jamaican pirate on off shore leave. I had watched in awe and horror as he proceed to consume obscene amounts of Vodka - enough to put half the Russian army to shame.
-- 60 minutes earlier --
Me: Hey...HEY wait, if Manfred is drinking, who will drive?
Conejo: Hey...man...let me tell you something (puts his arm around me) in Bolivia, we have...cliche. If you don drink...you don drive....
Well, I made it home safely in the end, but what an incredible day!
I hung out with the son of the president of Bolivia's biggest airline company. The son of the manufacturers of 50% of Bolivia's paper, the son of the dealer of every single one of Cochabamba's street lights.
And it turns out, they're even more fucked up than I am! Haha
Sarti was pissing on a tree, while Gringo climbed it and pretended to be King Kong. Everyone has a nickname. I had the honor of naming some.
Some of the guys are: Chewbacca, Enrique 'Kike' Iglesias, Cholo, and of course, my new name is Jamal.
It seems they've all seen Slumdog Millionaire. Haha!
Anyhow, they're all great guys. I'm going out with them in a few minutes. It promises to be fun!