Spanish class ended and my friends and I headed down the road to the fair the was going on. Tents were set up serving sweets, traditional foods, carnival games, and miniature replicas of everything you can imagine, from college diplomas to bedroom sets. We played some carnival games, I tried unsuccessfully to knock over some bottles with a soccer ball, then ate some pollo chicharron before heading home.

On the walk up the hill towards my neighborhood of Sopocachi we looked to our right and saw a man on the side of the road, standing around a short circular cardboard fence about 10 feet in diameter. In the middle of the circle was a guinea pig sitting on a small box . Along the fence were boxes numbered 1 through 10. The man was selling cards also numbered 1 through 10 for 1 Boliviano each. I reached into my pocket and pulled out some change that got me 5 cards. I took one and handed them out to my friends. I looked over and saw a small Bolivian boy, maybe 3 years old, watching the guinea pig next to us. I gave him a card, number 2, and he just looked at me about as aware of what was going on as I was. The rest of the cards were bought up by the small crowed that was beginning to gather and the game was about to begin.

The Bolivian man running the game walked over and placed a box over the top of the guinea pig. We all watched, unsure of what to expect. Then with one quick motion he spun the box and pulled it off the guinea pig. The guinea pig took off in the direction it was facing right into the box in front of it, box number 7. I looked down at the number 8 in my hand and quickly checked my friend’s cards for the 7. Ara was holding it it the air celebrating, so I quickly snatched it from her hand. I turned to the little Bolivian boy standing next to me and made the quick switch. He still didn’t know too much of what was going on but the crowd cheered as he was announced the winner. The Bolivian man placed two Bolivianos in the boys hand and he looked up with a huge smile that grew across his face. My friends and turned and left, laughing at what we just saw here in Bolivia. You just never know what to expect.