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Why is your blog called Urban Cholita?

In 2001, I joined the Peace Corps and moved to a small Bolivian village called Chuqui Chuqui, population 400. After a rocky start, I adapted … some would say too well. I started making cheese, swearing in Quechua and wearing a pollera, the traditional Bolivian skirt. I abandoned my hiking boots in favor of sandals made out of rough leather and tire rubber. I came as close to becoming a Bolivian campesina — a cholita — as a white girl from North Dakota ever can.

Today I live in a city of 8 million people. I wear high heels, I drink mojitos, I take the subway. I complain about slow-moving tourists. I swear — loudly and profusely. I’ve adapted. But I still have my pollera.

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