Tonight we arrived in Medellín after a 10 hour bus trip, but first, Bogotá! Although it was a bit too chilly and a lot too smoggy for me, it definitely had it’s high points:
-Valeria y Oscar, the absolute best couchsurfing hosts I’ve ever had! They were so warm, welcoming, generous and very fun. I can’t give them enough thanks for making our stay in Bogotá beautiful, relaxing and genuine.
-Introduction to Aguardiente, a traditional Colombian liquor that tastes like anise. And many thanks to all of Valeria’s coworkers that kept serving it up, in warm welcome! (Chanting U-S-A in the bar when we arrived was fantastic, funny and just a tad embarrassing).
-Museo de Botero, where we were able to see many of Botero’s originals (the Colombian artist who painted all the fat/affluent people/families with social subtexts), along with a few Picasos and a really wonderful Wolfgang Tillmans photography exhibit, for free!
-Massive, dramatic clouds in so many shades of grey and afternoon showers.
-The incredible salt mines in Zipaquirá, complete with a massive cathedral (lined with pews- full on and functional) carved out of salt 180 meters underground. Crazy, beautiful, moving. I even prayed. The photo is of Angela shooting the ceiling- notice the natural flow of minerals in the walls. Haven’t uploaded any of the others yet.
-An unforgettable experience of kindness, where through a random series of events, Angela and I ended up gushing about how “pregnant” we were to our waiter, while drinking beers, rather than “embarrassed” (not all words are cognates- “embarazada” indeed means pregnant, not embarrassed- we found this out later). “We’re sorry, we’re just so pregnant! (Swig beer)”.
Disclaimer: neither of us are actually pregnant, just embarrassed. Double time.
-The kindness of all the Colombianos that helped us navigate the buses and streets, with such patience for my stumbling Spanish.
Pues, ahora. The long bus ride from Bogotá to Medellín was bumpy and beautiful. We passed through all sorts of pueblitos where dogs roamed free and people sat outside with friends drinking cervezas. Clothes hung from lines, colorful hammocks swung from porches. The mountains we weaved through were 100 shades of green, at-least, and lush with vegetation. Fruit trees grew wild. High valleys were strewn with cows, horses and variations thereof. We crossed huge rivers the color of earth (see photo, although it does it no justice). I stepped off the chilly bus into a hot and steamy day, thinking- finally! Now this feels like Latin America.