Thursday, 6 July 2006

Bucaramanga

Last week I went on a 12 hour road trip north of Bogotá to the tropical city of Bucaramanga. One of the things I love best about road trips is covering a large enough distance to watch the landscape change and this trip didn’t disappoint. We went from the cold high mountains of Bogotá with pine trees, through farming districts and past lakes, then the sun started to shine and banana trees were in abundance. Following this we passed through harsh grey mountains with no vegetation and valleys cut by a single line of water with slopes so steep only the mountain goats can survive.

On the way we stopped at the small historic town which I can´t remember the name of. It was all small white buildings with green painted highlights and cobble stone streets. The village was perched on the edge of a mountain, overlooking a gorge with an even larger mountain range on the other side.

As is the layout for all towns here, the centre square was the hub of the village. After viewing the magnificent church I was preyed on by hawkers selling Hormigas Culonas…. Sun baked Ants! And they definitely didn´t taste like chicken! As I was trying to get the offending morsel dislodged from my back tooth I was shocked to see Liz by a whole bottle of them as a gift for Stephy. Yuk.

Back on the road I saw my first harvest of tobacco, huge bunches of green leaves growing like lettuce. I was surprised to see some of the plants growing on an almost vertical slope because most of the terrain is so mountainous.

At lunch time we stopped in San Gil a popular town for white water rafting and visited a Parque Natural - El Gallineral. It was like steeping into a mystical fairytale. The trees were mammoth made even more spectacular as they were covered in hanging moss, orchards and ferns.

Returning to the road I began to regret partying so hard the night before (getting home only 1.5 hours before leaving!) and eating that damn ant. Because as the roads twisted and turned in their descent and then accent of the Chicamocha mountain so did my stomach.

But I have to go now, Stephy needs the computer. I´m sorry that again there are no photos, I´m still having problems trying to upload. Hopefully I´ll work it out soon.

I´m off to Medellín tomorrow morning at the crack of dawn – so I´ll post again on Monday.

3 comments:

Sammie said...

sounds like the trip went well. HOwever, I can't believe you ate an ant! It reminded me of when David and Gareth used to raid the bull ant mounds on the curb near hovenden, and do dreadful things to them! Ha ha! I'm Driving BB out to Mum's in about 1/2hour for the first time on my own! Very exciting. Hope to speak to you soon! When are you leaving for Cuba? xxxxx s.

Candice said...

Hey Sammie, I leave for Cuba on Friday 21st July - I can´t wait! I heard your maiden voyage went smoothly, well done! Love you.

Anonymous said...

and to think that poor little ant was just basking in the sun one minute and then...stuck in your back tooth. I know who I am barracking for. Much love, the Animal Liberator!