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Bolivian hospitality: Best in the world

By International Editor / January 26, 2009

Reporters on the Job: Bolivians have got to be the nicest people in the world. They are always helpful, and it is the one country in Latin America where I do not have to fight for fair cab fares because I am a gringa.

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My first day in La Paz I went to a local gym. And while I was using a StairMaster, I noticed that a little baby was wandering around, getting in the way of people exercising. But instead of getting upset, everyone (men and women alike) was gushing over him, picking him up, putting down their weights to pat his head.

On the day of the referendum, I stopped an old man on the street to ask his opinion about the election. He told me he would talk to me as we walked. About 15 minutes later, we approached a house, he opened the door, and introduced me to his wife, who, without knowing what I was doing there, shuttled me to the kitchen table where they proceeded to feed me a delicious three-course meal. It was referendum day, so all restaurants were closed and there are no cars allowed on the streets.

As I left, the wife told me: “We cannot let you go hungry. Come back for dinner!”

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