It was not planned, it should have never happened. Already at travel planning stage, when Adnan expressed his desire to visit the mine of Potosi, the biggest silver mine in the world, I answer “No problem, I will find something else to do.” Maybe because I grew up in the north of France, a former mining area, I have always associated mines with danger. The idea of going in a dark, and narrow space for a couple of hours was nothing that I felt relaxed about.
You have to admit that between the paragraph in the guidebook discouraging people suffering from claustrophobia or any breathing problem to take the tour and the flyer of the agency mentionning “crawling in nighmarely tunnels” “not for whoosies“, nothing was made to make me feel confident. I am not even talking about the disclaimer you have to sign specifying that you understand the risks and that in case of in cave accident, you will be as exposed as the miners themselves.
But I was intrigued and curious. Many travelers were talking about a really interesting experience. Sure, it´s not every day you have the possibility to go into a real mine – not a tourist mine.
The night before I just couldn´t fall asleep. I was picturing myself crawling in muddy tunnels, encountering rats -that I have phobia of- and finally the mountain collapsing over me. On the morning, still indecise, I could not forget these terrible visions.
Finally, the fear to regret not to go was stronger and I set up my mind.
Dressed in miners´clothes and armed with a miner´s helmet and a headlamp, I took a zip of the miners´ 96% alcohol. And I went down the mine…
To know how it went, read Adnan´s story that we will publish tomorrow!