16.06.2017 - 25.06.2017 32 °C
What an amazing week. We finally managed to get some sleep last night (in bed well before midnight for the win) thus, all of us were up at the crack of dawn (given proximity to the equator daylight is 6-6 Daylight Colombia pretty much all year around). Our final day here we spent leisurely strolling the streets of Cartagena. While that activity sounds lovely and it was fun, beautiful and lovely it was also hot, f'ing hot (the french is appropriate trust me). I don't know if I have ever felt heat & humidity like this, I didn't know I could sweat that much and even with 60 on (diligently reapplied) I burnt (we all have varying degrees of colour but a couple of us where wearing 8 so we don't feel bad for them!). Ren and I made a quick pit stop at a local Casino to borrow the Baños and felt compelled to plug a slot machine as payment, we didn't understand the game or really how to bet so our 5 mm pesos went quickly with no payoff.
The cub decided to sun bathe and take advantage of the rooftop patio and a good book while cougars melted off some calories exploring. We wandered out of the old city into what felt like more 'real' Cartagena, found a mall (I was in search for a soccer jersey for a certain someone) and wandered through the shops (AC was a highlight attraction as was seeing what the locals shop at). We strolled among the city streets, mostly people watching, until the mornings coffee (Iced, and while I don't normally embrace an ice cap when it is 27 degrees at 7am it seems appropriate) and empanada wore off and we found a quaint patio and some cold drinks paired with another ceviche and ensalada. My margarita kicked me in the ass (I am gong to blame the heat) so I sauntered home for an afternoon siesta while the other ladies continued exploring. We are now all showered and smell clean (for a nano second until we go outside again) and are off to hit Café del Mar for a pre-dinner cocktail.
(Cindy got photobombed, no idea why?)
Tomorrow we begin our journey home with a mid-morning flight from Cartagena to Bogotá, 1.5 hour layover (which some may think is too short given we need to clear exit customs) and then on to Toronto. We overnight in Toronto and should be home if all goes well by noon Monday. We are hopping that none of our flights exhibit the smoke like cloud that our flight into Cartagena did (we are told it was condensation and given the temperature difference and humidity versus Bogotá I believe that).
I am hoping on the flight from Bogotá to Toronto I can get our guest writers to put down their final reflections and thoughts. Mine are pretty simple, the country is amazing and I can't wait to come back and explore more. Did you know they have ruins here as old as Macchu Picchu? The one-time Tayrona capital, Ciudad Perdida, built between the 11th and 14th centuries. Ever heard of San Agustín? A collection of 500 life-sized ancient sculpted statues of enigmatic origin dotting the surrounding countryside? Bet you have never heard about Tierradentro, an elaborate underground tombs scooped out by an unknown people. Don't feel bad neither did I (Thank you Lonley Planet). The country is still mostly void of the hordes of tourists you might find elsewhere, likely due to the misconception regarding one's safety here. Colombians are friendly and warm (thank you to all of you who hosted us). The food is incredible, simple, fresh, flavourful and healthy. There are numerous activities (remember this is one of the most eco-diverse countries in the world) and it is still relatively untravelled by most.
I need to add, that these ladies made this trip unforgettable and I feel truly blessed to have them in my life. I feel incredibly blessed to have had the opportunity to travel and experience all that we have done with these smart, funny and beautiful ladies. There is nothing like girlfriends.
Until next time,