Bogota Journals

Colombia, Land of Enchantment

Best of IgoUgo

A July 1991 trip to Bogota by Whirlwind

Macu tribesman and his wife  Photo, Bogota, Colombia More Photos
Quote: From Bogota's great heights to the llanas and rain forests below, Colombia has many adventures to offer. I had them anyway.

Colombia, Land of Enchantment

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Quote:
One thing I found fascinating was the merchandise sold on street corners and along boulevards: palm trees, furniture, carved nativity scenes--I even saw an antique gramophone. If you're shopping downtown, do so no later than mid-morning but after rush hour traffic begins to settle down. Saturday morning might be the best trafficwise. I was once asked to accompany an expedition of missionaries on an afternoon shopping spree downtown. I didn't end up going, but the missionaries returned early in the evening with tales of seeing an ambulance load up a mafia member who was assassinated gangland style right out in the street with a sawed-off shotgun. Quick Tips: If you are walking thro...Read More
Quote:
It was a cool, damp, fall-like but sunny morning the first time I buzzed into Bogota's Aeropuerto Internacional. Customs ignored me entirely and I was about to exit the airport altogether when I spotted a man holding a placard that read, simply 'Allan.' The man escorted me to a jeep that howled down thoroughfares lined with freelance mercantes hawking powdered milk, palm trees, vintage gramophones, and practically anything else that one could imagine. After spending the night in a missionary guest house in Bogota, I was sent "down the hill" late the next morning in the first available jeep on a three-and-a-half hour jaunt to Villavicencio. Our route out of the Latin met...Read More

Colombia for two weeks, PART III...

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Quote:
My last night at the missionary compound I played cards with the family of a mission pilot who was out on duty. After a few hands the lights flickered, then died. The guerrillas had sabotaged several high voltage towers. 'In Guatemala,' I told my aunt as word filtered in with respect to the causes of the blackout, 'our guerrillas would never get off with dynamiting main power lines.' Other reports had the guerrillas attempting to blow a bridge along the main conduit between Villavicencio and the capitol, stopping traffic coming out of mountain tunnels in order to spray paint on vehicles slogans of the revolution, and hijacking a plane at the Villavicencio airport. To the Villavicencio airpor...Read More
Bible translator's mission compound Photo, Bogota, Colombia
Quote:
It was a weather pattern of daily rains when I arrived in central Colombia. Water had ponded up for weeks around the edge of the compound near my Uncle’s cottage and one day a fish leapt out which he caught with his bare hands and later ate for dinner. Despite the regular rains, the sun was no stranger either. One morning I walked with the smiling sun high into the foothills above the mission compound, crossing along the way an unending line of army ants, some carrying whole leaves intact. Upon my return I was informed of a compound curfew from that moment on--guerrilla activity had been reported within kilometers of the mission. After my first week at the mission station, ...Read More

Guarapos...

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Guarapos Photo, Bogota, Colombia
Quote:
A wonderful experience when visiting any tropical Latin American country is guarapos--the squeezed juice of cane sugar. And don't worry about the brown color of this delicacy! Squeezed by hand or squeezed by small steam engine, guarapos is a refreshing experience.