Journal Entry From Colombia 6

1/30- Overnight bus, San Agustin>Bogota

Well, I picked a winner.  For Wiggy´s last night in Colombia we are packed into the hotest, loudest, shitty-est, most crowed bus ever.  Against Wiggy´s intuition I picked this company instead of another and here we are in hell.  Only 12 hours to go.

San Agustin was pretty good.  Didn´t love the town itself, but the ancient tombs and statues were really cool to a history nerd like me.  We stayed at a serene hotel, Finca de Cielo.  The women working there were very patient with us and immensly helpful.  The Colombian hospitality everpresent.  We arrived around 8AM and after a delicious ¨home¨cooked brekkie, our hosts ushered us onto an 8 hour jeep tour of the the region and more far flung acheological sites.  I was exhausted after acidently getting wasted on the previous night´s overnight bus(oops), but the statues and tombs were pretty damn cool and the countryside was breathtaking as usual.

Today we walked the park, still admiring the flat, grimacing faces that are a mystery to this day.  Its kind of like an unsung Easter Island.

My highlight though, was lunch at a roadside restaurante, apparently with no name.  The shaded outdoor tables and ice cold beer were a perfect antedote for the suprisingly blazing sun.  At this point I am pretty goddamn sick of fried trucha(trout, local mainstay), so I said fuck it and went for the carne asada.  Eventually a wooden board arrived with a juicy slab of beef, 2 patacones, fresh fries, and fried banana.  A little extra chimichurri and cabage salad on the side were extra treats.  It was all gone before you could say ¨bad vegetarian¨.  I was watching the women cooking away in the open air cocina and I decided now was the time, I needed to schooled in the art of patacon preparation.  The chef-ette was more than happy to demonstrate and explain the simple process for me.  Simply cut a hard plantain in thirds, fry for about 5 minutes, dry on towel until ready to serve, smash with wooden block and fry again.  Simple, delicious perfection.

To end the day, and our stay in San Agustin, we took a afternoon horseride to yet more archeological sites, aranged at our hotel.  The guide was full of knowledge  and the statues were still interesting, but the horseride itself was the shit!  I´ve only ridden a horse once before on a family trip to Montana, during my too-cool-for-family-trips teen years, but now in my ¨old age¨ I can appreciate the experience as it should be.  Traveling the Colombian countryside on horseback is something I´ll never forget.  It was about 4 hours, through small towns, back trails, forrest covered mountains all around us.  Loved it.

All high on life we had to say goodbye to our horses and gracious hosts, as our bus left at 7PM.  As usually happens, the euphoria was broken in the town center, and eventually smashed by this bus.

I wish I could´ve taken my horse to Bogota.

(re-typed on a really shitty computer in Bogota, hopefully will fix errors when I get home tomorrow)


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