60 - Dodging

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3 Days Later

Claire Dakota

Flying on multiple airlines was the worst experience that I've ever had. I should have paid more to travel on the Iberia flight from Denver to Madrid and then from Madrid to Santa Cruz De La Sierra. I faced many issues with my baggage being transferred from the Aeromexico plane to the LATAM plane in Mexico City. These airlines weren't codesharing, so in Mexico City, I had to take out my baggage and get it checked once again. The most comfortable leg of my journey, on the other hand, was getting from Mexico City to Santa Cruz De La Sierra via Lima. The baggage transfer in that leg was handled by LATAM itself because I was flying from Mexico City to Lima and from Lima to Santa Cruz De La Sierra with the same airline.

I enjoyed my time at Mexico City's and Lima's airports. Mexico City's airport surprised me the most. All my life, I grew up thinking that Mexico was a third-world country, so I expected Mexico City's airport to look like a third world country's airport: dirty, dilapidated and outdated. But, contrary to my expectations, the airport looked very beautiful both in its interiors and exteriors. Flying above Mexico's airport before landing, I beheld the breathtaking view of the airport's architecture from the sky. Mexico City as a whole looks adorable from the sky. It's a huge city.

One thing I must say that struck me the most about Lima's airport was how helpful the staff was. They offered to help me with everything that I needed as soon as I landed, without expecting payment. Jorge Chavez International Airport must be proud of its staff.

The airplane that took me from Lima to Santa Cruz De La Sierra was an A320 neo. It was a very comfortable flight with a generous amount of leg space. Onboard, there were no annoying babies that cried like they were being strangled to death. I slept peacefully through the duration of the flight, even though I managed to steal occasional glances at the scenery outside. The terrain we flew over was predominantly mountainous. It seemed like an entire, wide block of land was elevated in the region that lay beyond the mountains, which were visible during takeoff at Lima's airport. We were flying at 35,000 feet and even then the ground below looked like we were flying at 15,000. The mountains were of varying colors of green. They got their color from the trees that grew on them: some were parakeet; some were basil; some emerald; some pickle; and some shamrock.

By afternoon two days ago, I reached Santa Cruz De La Sierra. It was my first day in Bolivia. I met with Luismar Dos Santos, an officer sent by Captain Felipe to meet up with me. She was very hospitable. She helped me with my bags and carried them up to my room in the Government guesthouse at Santa Cruz De La Sierra. On the first day, she didn't immediately begin discussing the missing children with me. Instead, she took me to a restaurant and bought me a nice Bolivian almuerzo: rice, cooked dried beef, mashed potatoes, and different kinds of sauces. The food was liquid and solid perfection. After lunch, she told me about the different amenities in the guest house, and only in the evening did we begin discussing the case of the missing children. I shared some of the biodatas and fingerprints of the children and the teachers with Luismar. Besides those, I also gave her a lot of other miscellaneous documents. She took the documents that I gave her and put them in a green file emblazoned with the insignia of the Bolivian Police.

After putting the papers that I gave her in the file, Luismar told me that using the information, which I gave her about the agency that Mr. Gallagher contacted via Lonely Planet's Thorntree, Captain Felipe could find out who the camp keeper of the children's camp was. Finding who the camp keeper was and the location of his camp was essential in finding out the location of the children.

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