Rambling Robert's Travels

This blog chronicals the travels of myself, Rambling Robert, on my next adventure to South America.

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I am a world traveller. I do not work as such. I have been homeless and unemployed since 1October 2003. I worked as a chef for 30 years in America.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Santa Marta Colombia

Travel update from Santa Marta Colombia
Hi Everyone,
I am in Santa Marta Colombia, it is a city of about 300,000 on the Carribean Sea about 200km east from Caragena. Since my last update I have been to Medellin and to Cartagena.
I just got back from swimming in the Carribean Sea (Mar de Caribe) The water is warm and the waves are tiny.Lots of Colombians swimming and playing futbol on the beach which is a lovely white sand at Rodero Beach, 10 minutes west of Santa Marta. Santa Marta has a nice beach too but not too many swimmers. The beaches to the east and west are nicer and cleaner. I stayed here last night and will be here for two more nights. On Sunday, I fulfill one of my great travel dreams, to go to La Ciudad Perdida (the lost city). I am confirmed to go, I have paid my 400,000 pesos (ouch!) and there is no backing out now. The Ciudad Perdida or Lost City was discovered in the late 1970s. There are no roads to this 400 hectare (450 acres)archeological site. The only way to get there is to treck through the jungle with a guide.It is about 25 km through virgen rainforest up and down hill. 35 (90f)degrees and 90% humidity!
Then when you finally get there, there are 1,200 steps to climb. We will go from sea level to 1100 meters, about 3500ft above sea level. We will hike for 3 days to get there, and then the fourth day see the site and then on the 5th and 6th day hike back out.
SShhhaaa, I will be 50 in abut 4 months. I dont quite know if I have the Jam for this kind of stuff anymore...but what the wahh hay, theres only one way to find out!! The last trip like this one was the trek for 3 days and 2 nights in the golden triangle of Thailand. This one is 6 days and 5 nights. I will update you all when I get back.
Cartagena was one of the reasons I came here. Ever since I saw the movie Pirates of the Carribean with Johnny Depp, I wanted to see this ancient historical city. I must say I was a little dissappointed, kind of dirty and crowded. Many travellers love this old city with its walls and cannons and history of piracy and slavery but I just couldnt get into the vibe, yah know? So I followed RBs first rule of the traveler "If your not having fun...leave." So I left! Took an early bus to Santa Marta and here I am.
Before Caragena I was in Medellin for 6 days. Funny how this seems to go. I thought I would visit Medellin for a couple of days at most and stayed for a week. I thought I would be in Cartagena for a week and stayed for one night! You´ve got to play it the way you feel it.
Medellin was a beautiful city. clean and safe. I met up with lots of cool guys and gals there and had some cool fun. Went to see lots of Fernando Botero's art work. Many paintings and statues.
Including the famous "Bird of Peace" in San Antonio plaza. This giant Bronze statue done in Botero's unmistakeable style was the target of a "terrorist" bomb in 1995. The statue was badly damaged and about 20 persons lost their lives. All civilians. The statue was left un-repaired at Boteros request to further illustrate the futility of La Violencia and a new one stands right next to it. The original sits on a pedestal with a plaque listing the names and ages of the bomb victims including a 30 year old woman who was never identified. It is a heart breaking scene...
I also took in a wonderful futbol (soccer) match between Medellin (in Red and blue) and Nacional (in green and white) It was POURING DOWN RAIN and we (myself, another gringo from Wisconsin named Chris, and a dutch guy and an Israeli woman)were drenched, I mean just soaked to the skin but so was everyone else and no one seemed to care. It was a lovely warm evening and it stopped raining right before the game began but we were as I say just soaking wet (part of the fun I guess!)
The way they set this up, see, is they put the lunatic fringe hard core
FAN-atics on either side of the stadium behind the goals. Keeping them apart from one another. We sat just next to the hard core Nacional fans. What fun!!! They were chanting and jumping up and down. Throwing confetti, Screaming yelling I mean just absolutely GOING OFF, all night, even during the half time break!!!They dont sell beer or any other alcohol at the games and everyone is patted down by the police at the entrance. I had my 50cent lighter confiscated. Meanwhile there were fans who had HUGE firecrackers and they let off green and white or blue and red smoke when they exploded. but my lighter was confiscated...go figure.
No beer allowed but all through the match that lovely sweet smell of marijuana wafted up through the crowd. It was a peaceful and totally fun event ending in a tie score of 1 to 1. I am glad I got to go.
I stayed at a nice hostal called the Palm tree that is in no guide book. The two cool places in Medellin are the Palm tree and the Black Sheep. When I got there there were like 8 French travellers who did not know each other before they met at the hostal. and about 6 Americans and the usual assortment of Ozzies, Brits, Kiwis Irish and Israelis. I loved Medellin.
So now here I am and you are all up to date on my most excellent adventure through Colombia. Nothing to do but hang at the beach for a couple of days and then treck through the jungle to the lost city. What a life huh?
I have always thought I would hook up with my buddy Peta (whom I travelled with in Turkey)in Caracas Venezuela after Colombia but I just heard from her that she is in England again after spending the last three months in Syria. So she may not be there. I am having some second thoughts about Venexzuela and may change my plans and take a cheap flight or boat from Cartagena to Panama city and do Panama, El Salvadore, Nicaragua and Honduras instead of Venezuela and Brazil, and then head up through Mexico for my parents birthdays in USA in late April for Dad and Early May for Mom. Any suggestions?
I believe that my sweetie Angela from Austria/Peru will go to USA with me but this is as yet still up in the air. If so we will visit Florida, NJ,NY, New Hampshire (hi Perrin and Julie) and Then Colorado to learn Yoga with Suzy and then off to the Left coast to play a little poker and see SLO and RB and Mash and Chandy and Howard-n-Jay,PestoJim et al, and Jonathan and John and oh my buddha... I cant list all the Slo People I want to see before heading North to Sonoma to see Mortay, Deb and the kids and Hank and Doc and Tommy and Jeanie and thier new baby... I also gotta fit North Carolina in their some how...Then most likely tour the middle east ie Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Syria and Iran for a year or so.
So... What are all you guys planning anyway? I sure do love to hear from you all so write to me soon.
Nothing but Love to all of you
Rambling Robert the Travelling Man.


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