Category: Bolivia

Salve, oh patria

My mind is preoccupied with very little else than my upcoming trip, so this morning I started out by checking out posts my fellow WordPress-bloggers had written about Ecuador. Then, I surfed on to Wikipedia to check on a couple of facts I had read (and yes I know there are more reliable  sources than Wikipedia but I guess I just wanted a quick fix) and stumbled upon the Ecuadorian national anthem.

I remember the Bolivian national anthem from when I lived there as a kid and I remember it as an anthem an army could march too; very different from the slow and solemn anthem we have in Holland. The lyrics are quite defiant, celebrating a newly won freedom from the Spanish and calling out: We will die before we live on as slaves! I remember being overwhelmed by the Bolivian national anthem whenever I heard it in public.

Besides having a quite similar coat of arms to the Bolivian one, the Ecuadorian anthem also speaks of the bloodshed in their battle for freedom from the Spanish. But where the last strophe the Bolivians sing is some kamikaze-threat to anyone who dares attempt to enslave them, the Ecuadorians speak of the beauty in the face of their nation and how it is greater even than the sun that shines so bright. I thought that was absolutely lovely!


I think if I would have to name one thing the Bolivians tend to chronically lack, it is optimism. They go through their daily struggles and have resigned to being confined to their fate and never being able to do anything about it. I wonder if the Ecuadorians will be different in the same way their national anthem is.

Has any of you got any experiences on this respect you’d like to share?