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January 16, 2006 – A journey to Potosi, Bolivia in South America

Potosi, A Silver Mining Town

Potosi, a little silver mining town in Bolivia, is also the highest city of its size in the world in terms of elevation. I found Potosi somewhat depressing. Maybe it was because of the coldness, being that it's supposed to be summertime here, and that it rained quite a lot.

Another reason could be that a lot of the people here seem to be very sad. Many of the men and boys (starting as young as 12 years old) here are miners. Quite a few females have lost their husbands to the mining business as well. Not only are the conditions pretty primitive to work in, but it's also at high altitude. Most males that enter this type of job don't expect to live very long - not only due to explosions and avalanches, but also because of silicosis pneumonia from toxic gases.

mountain to be mined in Potosi

a miner by El Diablo, who they worship since he owns the underground, by giving him smokes, coca leaves, and alcohol offerings

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