City of Gold?

Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
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Trip End Feb 26, 2011


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Where I stayed
HOSTAL SUE CANDELARIA

Flag of Colombia  ,
Friday, February 11, 2011

When we arrived back in Bogota we made our way to the Candelaria district and to the Hostal Sue our new home for the next few days. The rain was absolutely terrential and thunder and lightening were all the rage today. The streets were like rivers, we hadnt seen rain like this since China, but never the less we set out on foot, albeit in flip flops, to explore the centre of Bogota for the afternoon. I think first of all we owe a quick apology as our blogs will become much shorter with far less photos from now on as we no longer have a laptop, for some reason it died and when we started to run the diagnostics Lady E thought it would be more productive to play solitare and turn it off mid way through (by accident), we can no longer get to the diagnostics page so we are back in internet cafes with an operating system that isn┤t in our language thus we dont want to put our memory card in it. It may also mean we have lost quite a few pictures (I knew this would happen when we took the precaution of backing all our photos up and sending them home), oh well if the laptop is completely dead we have only lost the Galapagos, Mindo and Colombia photographs. We will try and add some photos soon though, somehow.

Well our first impressions of Bogota are that it is a much bigger city than any of the other Colombian cities we have been to and with a lot more obvious social problems, there are hundreds of people living on the streets, yes we saw a lot in Cartagena and Medellin but nothing on this level, there are also a lot of people who perhaps should be in care never mind living on the streets. As always I dont quite fit the South American mould and stand out like a sore thum, I had to do my finger shaking a few times as proper oddballs kept grabbing me and trying to pull me to follow them, my Spanish was so poorly received Erica was in stitches when I opted for "Eh up Skeezor if you dont piss off I┤m gonna whack you" with a raised hand. There is also a hell of a lot of graffiti here, some of it is great street art but most just mindless tagging of monuments, this may perhaps be a leftover of the riots that happened only a month or so ago.

As we wandered around we just couldnt make up our mind what to make of the place it certainly didn┤t have the safe feel of Medellin or Cartagena. We headed into the San Francisco Cathedral which is the oldest here and very nice however we are both a bit churched out so didn┤t spend that long there. We then headed for the Gold Museum, a must see according to the guide books and the number one thing to do here according to Trip Advisor.  It only cost a pound, though its free on Sundays, to get in but it doubled up as a rain shelter from the still torrential downpours. The museum was bloody good to be fair and had the most gold I think I have seen anywhere excÚpt Burma despite the Spanish having plundered most of the Colombian gold reserves during their occupation. Despite the fact it was a good museum we both tired rather quickly so probably only spent about an hour and a half in there. We headed back to the hostel still confused if Bogota was going to grow on us or not.

After a lounge about watching the television in our room .... yes the television in our room nice treat especially in t he rain we headed out to the local Mongolian Barbeque, where I had a calamari and prawn dish with veggies, noodles and a few different sauces, the lady went for chicken and prawn. It was such a simple place with just a counter of ingredients, a huge hot plate and a fridge and it was delicious.  We headed back and took shelter in the hostel bar, well we would wouldnt we, watching the rain through the open windows, we weren┤t going out lets face facts.

Erica edit : Despite the rain here it is so nice to get back to a cooler temperature without any mosquitoes, and strangely enough we keep getting a Christmas feeling but we just cant put our finger on why.  Andrew seems to think it might be the thick blankets that we are lay under which are that heavy that you cant move when you are under them and the fact that the room is dark and damp, we feel like mushrooms.  It might also be that we are lay in bed and able to watch cable tv so we invariably watch cooking programmes starring Nigella Lawson, this is the only thing in English, but I love her anyway, which is really reminding us of home.  Anyway, I will reserve judgement on what I think of Bogota, you never know it just might be a grower.
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