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Back in the Insanity

We returned to the US, Fort Lauderdale, on August 1, 2019, with the gracious help of Avianca. It was a pleasant 3 hour and 15 minute flight from Bogota' to Florida. We were immediately faced with the necessity of setting up a new apartment and getting Tomas registered in school, a somewhat daunting task, navigating a new and somewhat larger school. But enough of the perils of John, more on the last few days in Colombia.

We went to Bogota' earlier than necessary so we could pick up and do things incidental to the trip. I have a friend who owned a coffee service company in Florida and I brought him a jar of the best instant coffee from Colombia. It is a blend of coffee with vanilla and is very rich in flavor with almost none of the US instant flavor. But, alas my friend felt it had an after taste, but his spouse felt it was better than some hotel coffee. My spouse went to the dentist while in Bogota' at a fraction of the cost of a visit in the States.

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We went from Guaduas to Bogota' for a week for my spouse's sister's wedding reception.The reception was at a good restaurant in the city and the food and service were excellent. The meal consisted of appetizers,wine, salad, cheese, and an entre' of salmon and beef with a side dish of french fries. The preparation was excellent and the presentation was equal to the food quality. The restaurant decor was tasteful, in keeping with the event.

The reception was attended by extended family and all had a delightful time after which some of us returned to the bride and groom's apartment while they left from there to go to a local hotel.

Much of my time in Bogota' was spent in the apartment, a five story walk up, as I am balance challenged and have difficulty with stairs. I was impressed with the city. It is large and appears to have a very modern downtown area modern. While parts of the city appear more rustic, much of it is clean and orderly as parts of ci…

Another Trip to Colombia

Its a new year and I am back in Colombia. Currently in Guaduas or Monday, but may go to Bogota tomorrow depending on when my spouse wants to go.

We left Fort Lauderdale, Florida on this trip and had about the same 3 to 4 hour flight to Bogota on Avianca and arrived earlier in the day than the last trip and had over one hour driving in the city looking for our ride to Guaduas. We arrived at our hotel two and one half hours after finding our ride to the hotel. It was a rather invigorating trip, traffic being somewhat heavy. Guaduas and the hotel are much as I remember them, quiet and comfortable.

Much of my time is spent on the computer and I am happy with the working wifi at the hotel. I am able to keep up with my email and general news and events. It is nice not being exposed to the chaos and hyper news cycle from the states unless I want to dip my toe in, a welcome respite.

A project I started in December and January I continued this trip. Thinking about solar retrofit at the hotel. …

A Closer Look at Guaduas

The next day began with more time spent in the hotel consuming some local fruit for breakfast and a cup of excellent Colombian coffee, the nectar of the gods.

View (above) nearby the hotel on a street in Guaduas. It must be early as there is little foot or vehicular traffic.

 A scene from the patio inside the center parking area at the hotel. It is tastefully decorated with hammocks surrounding the center of the hotel, an open air atrium, pleasant during most of the day and cool in the morning, but a very nice place for coffee and pastries.

A further view from inside the atrium of the hotel. While there is another tree of a similar size, this is an ever green cedar or conifer providing a splash of green and a bit of shade for our enjoyment. Well that concludes this short post and perhaps the blog will be more animated with  pictures and video in the future.

A Little more Time in Guaduas

After Miguel returned me to Guaduas we had some ice cream at a local ice cream parlor near the plaza and talked in athe somewhat loud shop and watched the people going to and coming from the plaza.

Just as we finished  the ice cream and our discussion, some friends came from the hotel and we started the walk back to eat, spend some time relaxing and go to bed. The sun was low on the horizon and the evening was cool.

Supper was at a local hamburger restaurant in the plaza. The shop had hamburgers of different types and pizza. Our group expanded from three to about ten. The restaurant had problems accommodating the group, but the staff did in a most gracious manner.

Guaduas has celebrations periodically and these sometimes involve small seemingly spontaneous parades and on this occasion one occurred  with the following display:

Desert in Guaduas and a Trip to the Country

While many nights of our time in Guaduas, we went to a restaurant to eat supper, most nights were topped off with a delightful desert of ice cream and strawberries with bananas. Sometimes the ice cream was simply a delicious vanilla ice cream, but sometimes the cold treat had a pink color and a decidedly different taste. On occasion the ice cream had a green hue and appeared to be pistachio. Whatever the flavor of the frozen milk concoction, it was truly delicious.

Over the course of our time in Guaduas, we met interesting denizens. One, Miguel, wanted to learn English and was willing to swap much needed Spanish lessons for some pointers in English. His desire to learn made him an excellent student and perhaps on a future trip we can continue with his and my edification.

Miguel also provided a bit of a respite from relaxing in the patio of Hotel San Cristobal by offering a trip into the country for him to work briefly at two or three farms near Guaduas. One was a chicken farm which y…

A Quick Trip Exploring Guaduas

Stepping out of Hotel San Cristobol, puts you right on the sidewalk and very near the street wit cars driving by. The hotel is in an old Spanish colonial house between two and three blocks from the central plaza. Small shops, another hotel and a bakery are on the way to the plaza. The streets are cement and smooth as is the sidewalk. The weather is pleasant, a bit cool in the shade and decidedly warmer in the sun.

The five minute walk to the plaza gives one an opportunity to take in the sights, sound, and smells in Guaduas. Near the bakery the aroma is of cooking pastries tempting one to indulge with excellent Colombian coffee.

We would like a more substantial breakfast of eggs and some breakfast meat. So we walked to a restaurant about six blocks away and joined a table of about six people and had a meal of eggs, soup, rice, and arepas, a flat corn flour bread. Along with the meal we had that excellent coffee and delicious fruit juice, either mango or orange.

After breakfast, we pro…