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Andean priest and spiritual leader, Don Fabian Champi Apaza. Photo by Tom Pablo, Andes & Amazon Semester.

Water fight in the city!

Water fight. It is Monday and I just got to my homestay family for the first day. I am sitting in my room feeling slightly dazed and confused when my 18-year-old host sister Lyneth asks me if I want to go to a water fight in the city center. It is carnival which is a period of three weeks before lent where Bolivians celebrate with their families, party and honor Pacha mama who is a spiritual figure representing mother earth. One of their ways of celebrating is water guns, water balloons, and spray cans of foam! I am someone who hates having things thrown at me so I was so hesitant to say yes, but my desire to grow closer to my host family overrode my fear, after all its just teenagers with water, what could go wrong? We arrived at the city and immediately I get foam in my face and hair and ears. Well, the kids were not going to take it easy on me that was apparent and I was going to embrace it (aka hide behind my host sister). Although I can’t say I ever want to participate in a water fight in the middle of city again, I really got to bond with host sister, an experience I wouldn’t and will not change.