Not Reservoir Dogs but Running Dogs

Trip Start Jul 07, 2008
Trip End May 27, 2010

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Where I stayed
Hotel Kiosko
Hotel Oiba

Flag of Colombia  , Santander,
Wednesday, July 22, 2009

21st July 2009

Hotel oiba, oiba, Colombia (20,000 pesos)

Cool and damp

San Gil – oiba (56 kms)

Today we decided to have an easy day, apart from the 5.30 start that is. It's all uphill to Bogota, albeit at a slightly less frenetic pace than the last few mountains we've had to climb.  So we are back in the mountains again and the guy running the hotel keeps reminding me of this every time I ask for a key to our room, in other words you don't need one here 'en Sierra'. 

The ride today was a bit of a stroll really, but anticipating scorching hot weather, which is what we've had for the past week, we were out of the trap at 5.30 FAR too early for any human being.  needless to say, the scorching hot weather didn't appear, it's cool enough for me to be wearing a fleece and it looks like more rain, hey ho, hopefully it will rain itself out before tomorrow morning.

We are really liking Colombia.  The people are friendly without being pushy, the drivers are considerate (buses a little less so) and we feel very safe so far.  Colombians like cyclists, we get the thumbs up and little toots of encouragement from other road users, the only people who don't seem at all impressed by our feats are other cyclists.  The lycra clad brigade shoot up and down mountains with aplomb and if we are lucky we get a little whistle in recognition of the fact that we are alive and using the same kind of transport.  otherwise, they don't even look at us, how strange is that?  I've said it before though, cyclists are a strange lot sometimes.  The older guys (and invariably they are men) are much better, maybe it's an age thing rather than a cycling thing?

I was adopted by a dog today and it was very scary how quickly it happened.  There we were, bowling along slowly when across the other side of the road is a little sandy coloured mutt, with the look of a large, short haired Jack russell.  He spotted us and braved the busy road to cross over and have a closer look.  Used to dogs going into a feeding frenzy whenever we are near, it made quite a nice change to have a dog wagging its tail and looking like it wanted to be our friend.  So I stroked it, that was a bad move.  At once he was mine, within 5 minutes he was growling at dave and passing workmen in an effort to protect me.  Twenty minutes and several kms later, he was still there, despite me throwing things at him (for his own good, the damn dog was going to get itself killed running along beside me in the middle of the road) albeit by now at a distance.  It was only on a long downhill that finally made him gave up the ghost, not after a long chase first though.  I felt bad, because if I were to have a dog I would have one like him.

In this very sleep mountain village we have an open wifi network, which I believe belongs to the village itself, how nice is that.  I do, however, have to sit on the balcony to tap in, but that's not a bad thing, balconies are great places to observe people and life in general.  We have decided to take a little detour en route to Bogota, along minor roads to some 'beauty spots' which sound lovely.  We can camp in at least 2 of them, which suits us fine as long as it's not raining too much.  They are at a lower altitude to where we are now so we're hoping that bodes well for the weather.

Having had a large lunch, by mistake AGAIN, (we really didn't want the soup AND the chicken with rice, plaintain, salad and egg??? but we got it anyway)  dinner tonight was a mango and cake, dave had the torte de queso (cheese cake) and I had the churro (doughnut) and we've decided to try the local firewater, Aguardiente.  It's a bit like ouzo, but not as sweet, drown it with coke and it tastes much better.

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