Claudio Ferrufino writes in El Dia:
The cuisine in the country of thieves
Beatriz Rossells asked me to write the preface to the fourth edition of her wonderful book “Gastronomy in Potosi and Charcas, XVIII, XIX and XX centuries.” Things like that help to overcome the hardship it means to be a Bolivian. I prefer to write about weaklings and other treats on carbonated and stuffed chickens rather than on the shoplifters at the palace. Too bad, though the food is daily affair, we can not – or not know – live in an illusory world with a bountiful table.
Many times I have wondered about what the “curaca” monarch eats at the burned building in La Paz. If you listen his convoluted rhetoric, not because the convolutions of the brain are extremely complex, but simple questions, I’d say about chuño and powder [dried potato and other dried/powdered food]. I am told he is a despot with the servants. It is common for lesser beings who act and remind them their own sorrows. What Mr. Morales Ayma attacks in his speeches: white, capitalism, empire, the oligarchs, is all that longs to be. He does not want to imagine his daughter, as a modest Aymara, he wants her to be a Caroline of Monaco. Rants against Spain but licks the Bourbon ass when in his presence. Chuño? no way, filet mignon at least, because thieves in concert want to imitate those that galloped on their backs for centuries. They do not have “class”, to use a buzzword, as the Italian mafiosi, who came from hungry Calabria and Sicily, which are surrounded by marble and fine wines, among other things from the little kitsch world of fools and corrupt.
I refuse, I say every week, to write about the criminals who pose as lecturers and doctors, but also repeat that I must not be silent. I understand, because the conjugated anguish and anger explode violently, the bleeding that followed the Cuban and Iranian revolution, not to mention in what they became. The death of the corrupt is delicious catharsis. Ultimately not much, true, but the guillotine chop chop, amid profound mistakes, served in some way to harness modern France. There are crimes that can not be forgotten, and rob the people are the worst. So, the worst punishment …
But to say that in Bolivia is not the same as doing it, because the problem of idiosyncratic region avoids any study of human behavior. Will it be that the combination of a culture so disgusting filthy with another insurmountable, result in producing results. I hope not. I read on the computer an alteño [from El Alto city, formerly a neighborhood of La Paz city] writing about a doomsday fiction war; another in the Japanese film of monstrous beings; one more writing with detail and hope of the potosino Aullagas, brings lights. A chef friend cooks with tunta and cherimoya; Beatriz Rossells exposes the Basque culinary heritage in the Sucre cooking.
Some people work and think, fighting for survival while creating. We live among thieves who rule.
It was ever like this. Is that we have to state at some point in time, almost definitively that there are no absolutes, that you can not continue down this path. The internal borders of the republic with the narco-republics’ shrink.
Chapare and Yapacani are the land of the cartels, who contribute for thieves to continue their destructive work. No talk of homeland and not waste time. Let’s talk about dignity and respect. Let’s cut the myths of being what we are not, and believe that the above are what they are not. We are a people killed by bandits, but we are many and will cost them to get us all killed. The converse is easier.