To make a long story short, I took a trufi going the wrong way. But the long story is so much more intresting! So here it is, in full:
Tuesday of this week I was in a semi-unfamiliar area of the north end of town because I was making a phone call home and the one store was said to have cheaper rates. What can I say? I´m cheap! Anyway, after making the call home I needed to get to one of the plazas to meet a friend for coffee (and girl talk!). If I had been going there from my house I would not have had a problem at all. But I was not close to home. So I had to try to take a trufi to the plaza that I was not familiar with. Luckily, most trufi´s have signs on their windows stating which locations they drive past like plaza colon, post office, ect (in spanish of course). Well, I was running late and I saw a trufi that said plaza colon so I flagged it down and was on my way. Well... I knew almost immeditaley that I was not going in the right direction. I have a good enough map in my head to know that I needed to go west and south, not east to get there. But a bus route is a bus route so I knew I would end up there eventually so a waited for a while. By the time I decided that this bus was never going to take me to the plaza I was way out in the middle of some highway that I had never seen. I was on my way out of the city! So I had to take my chances and I got off of the trufi. A white girl, out on the middle of a highway, at nearly 6 at night was not really a good thing. So I was praying hard and waiting for a taxi, any taxi, to stop and take me to the plaza. I felt like I was standing there forever. Every trufi was going to other places and some taxi´s were not pulling over. Finally one stopped! Praise the Lord! All I said was ¨Plaza Colon¨and we were off. This cabbie had his wife with him too so that made me feel safer too. I finally got to the plaza and it only cost me 10 Bolivianos (less then $2) for the cab. I met my friend (she hadn´t given up on me thankfully) and we were on our way.
Unfortunetly, that is not the end of the story! Since I arrived late at the plaza we ended up talking past the time it had gotten dark. It had also started raining. So we headed out together to get a taxi to our homes. Well... easier said then done! As soon as it starts raining everyone in Cochabamba tries to get into a taxi, trufi, car, ect. Anything with wheels! So we waited in the rain, checking every bus, every taxi for free space. Nada. Nothing at all. (I told my friend that I would take whatever came first, a taxi or trufi just to get out of the rain. The next trufi that came by literally had people hanging out the door it was so jam packed full of people). We finally went to the other side of the road, grabbed a taxi headed the other direction, made him make a U turn and we finally got home. Wet, cold, and tired but we made it home!
The next day I decided that maybe it would be better if I just stayed home! Which I did :) Today all of life has been back to normal, thats a relief! But looking at it in retrospect, the ordeal with the trufi going to wrong way was really a worse case scenario. And I lived to tell about it. Thats a really really nice thing about Coch, you can grab a cab, anytime, anywhere (except when its raining!) and tell them exactly where you need to go and it actually costs very little. But praise God, He was with me on that highway!