A Travellerspoint blog

Inner Colombia

Is it dangerous to try and gage a perspective observing from a window seat....

Upon analysing nothing; one finds themselves processing the something's, anything's, everything's. Each things, as potentially thought provoking as the next. Thoughts, without too many considerations. And this is not due to “its” own perceived value . But as a one THING does pass by, another as interesting or as un-interesting or seemingly out of place (or even just perfectly abstract), catches the minds eye; it is naturally spiralled into ever new unknown directions. Repeated ever after and always within moments of the first/previous. Odd, i don't know? To me i guess so. Any perspective gained, most definitely uneducated. Some of the things (listed hereafter) are only given any initial thought for its proximity to my perceived know normality:

The road, usually carved into a climbing terrain, narrowly clings on curves each tighter than the next. Double yellow lines and slow speeds the caution but the fatal sight of crumpled metal is the definitive warning. Scars of once operational vehicles and “safety” balustrades string the path. But the memorials of the lost, highlighted with catholic symbology also immortalised with headlights and car part shrines; are the ultimate reminder of danger.

Terpel selling only fuel, diesel for $8700 COP per gallon delivers service to the Dodge and Chrysler Trucks of all shapes and sizes. Makeshift establishments, where six or more men all gaze into hoods - staring at engines doing nothing. Young individuals work upon tires that should never be reclaimed. An auto mechanic industry meets demand in unlikely ways.

In what you may consider to be a long distance from anywhere –happily people walk, children play and redundant horses still carry loads like yesteryear. One feels inclined to stop and ask (or watch) their day unfold.

Hoses and pipes of unknown origin and destination follow the road. A littering of spanish lettering - some instructional, others advertorial signpost the way. The unmistakable pepsi and coke logo’s are matched in number with some think new; "minotos y cellular" phone credit available here! Checkpoints and tolls cut the journey. Gardens make way for family farms, farms for cattle fields and green houses, then a landscape of commercial crops. But as townships end, forest (or is it jungle) with a mix of dense vegetations take hold. Birds and butterflies navigate old trees, bamboo, vines, palms, ferns, grasses, huge leaves, flowers of every colour. A wildness, a wilderness that is only managed (sculptured) by the passing traffic on this road. Exciting for it’s mystery and deep darkness within. Then, “scrub” a bushland that could be mistaken for home. Gum trees, yes eucalyptus - straight and tall, wait... where am I?

And when there is nothing. Be amased with unique, creative crafted fence lines/gates/barriers of innumeroous materials that divide the country side.
Hours spent in transit to the next city or tourist location. Inner Colombia, observed from a window seat.

Posted by AUS-MattyC 10:40 Archived in Colombia Comments (0)

First Day

overcast 12 °C

First Day.
5am or there abouts. 2600 meters above sea level. A fresh 4 degrees. Jan 9 2013, the years adventure is now to be realised. Dressing in what would appear and best be described as abstract. I set myself on finding the best El Cafe that La Canderlaria may provide for at this hour. Entering the clean one way streets one is met by the smell of breads being baked at the many closed “la panarderias”; sounds of distant transport and the normal on goings of a commercial city centre, i find an unusal mass of police officers with heavy arms and every second with a large dog, but unusually few peoples? Rollers doors covers windows and store fronts, grilles across others, lights within remain unlit - this city sleeps. A comfortable feeling, exploring alone, the tourist just watching and wandering, never lost yet anaware of exact location .The stories heard, none feared but any bad disolved with over pressence of different uniformed personnel. I greet locals with smiles not words and can only imagine what they are observing in my appeared randomness (both visual and with aimless direction), but then they do not meet any particular fashionable steryotype, most displaying a mix of new and old some of which branded, said expected in a metropolitan as such. Sometime later; finally, a girl of maybe 10 or 12 places a framed sign outside her door, it advertises combo’s? I assume her Caferteria is open so upon approach, in best day old broken spanish i enquire about the possability of El Cafe Sin Leche (black coffee)? Pleasantly escorted inside i sit and wait in one of the many booth style table settings. After turning on a small tv, the girl disappears behind the counter and looks to resume converation with her mother or older sister. They both busy themselfs and look pleased to have their first customer of the day. Shortly after arriving, having only spent minutes a watching the mornings news understanding nothing, i am brought a tray with the coffee as ordered but also a bagette shaped loaf and a large soup bowl of broth containing boiled potatoes, an interesting cut of meat that was possibly once beef but now grey and unrecogniseable and all scattered with dill and fine chopped parsely. I thanked the girl as i assumed i ordered the combo as advertised and was soon glad i had. My first meal and it was good. Arriving late the previous day, i hadnt actually eaten... Bogota’s El Doro International Airport is only 15 minutes by authorised taxi to my hostel of choice. But finding it, checking in and paying for it with freshly aquired Colombian Paso’s had been alot to do on little (if any) sleep. So; in my weary long travelled state, i managed to do little and climbed into bed for a well deserve marathon nap. But this ment presently although only seeking coffee the breakfast was welcomed and as it was tasty, so much so that i indulged in a second serve - all for the sumly price of $2.00AUD. The rest of the morning as the city awoken so did i and exporing the streets took its toll. It was not long before i decided either time difference (some 16 hours), the altitude or just jetlag in general meant i had earnt more coffee and further rest. Thus have had time to write these words.

Posted by AUS-MattyC 12:01 Archived in Colombia Comments (0)

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