Chilling in San Gil

Trip Start Dec 30, 2010
Trip End Jul 06, 2011

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Where I stayed
Macondo Guesthouse

Flag of Colombia  , Santander,
Saturday, March 26, 2011

Day 81 March 26 - The bus journey was long but the scenery absolutely stunning. I've seen pictures of the Colombian countryside before but never with my own eyes. There is lush green countryside everywhere I can see and every road we pass. In some places it feels like the UK countryside, small country road, people farming their land and enjoying the hot climate.... hang on, that last comment is nothing like England!!
We stop somewhere around 9am it's not San Gil so I pop into the bus station and grab some empenadas, couple of pollo ones! Another two hours later I've finally made it so San Gil. For some reason they don't offer blankets in northern parts of South America but love to keep you icy cold!!
A quick taxi ride and I find the hostel, again no reservation and I had heard this place gets busy but it was empty. I had a 6 bed dorm all to myself. I booked a white water rafting trip and got a couple of hours sleep. These bus journeys are starting to take their toll!!

I wake and wander out. I need a coffee so head to the bottom of my road, which is a steep drop, to the Plaza where I see an ice cream shop. I buy a take away chocolate Sundae and sit in the park munching that down while people watching. Next to the ice cream shop was a coffee shop. Of course, I tell myself that ice cream makes me think better. I grab an espresso to shake off the cobwebs and wander around exploring for an hour or so. The town is very old and very laid back.

After an hour of wandering around, at the back of my mind I know I am behind on my blog, I've put in so much effort this far and will not let it fall away. I've met some many people who are writing a journal, but are weeks behind, well except for Erica, she is writing an online blog as well as a personal diary. Very impressive. The afternoon soon disappears and my belly is grumbling, I spotted a place that did ribs so even though it's early South American style, it's not too early for Tony. I order ribs and expecting a rack, out came a grown man I wasn't reduced to tears, but they could have put a whole rack on! Just wait till I hit the USA!

I leave the rib place, wander around some more but I'm exhausted again, so head back to the hostel for an early night, well after I check up on football scores.

Miles walked 2.6
Temperature 28C 82F

Day 82 March 27 - After a long good night sleeping a 6 bed dorm all to myself I get up and check out the breakfast situation, there is free coffee and tea, so I opt for a coffee, then another one! I end up chatting to a young English couple, Steve and Rowina, who have just started travelling. Rowina just finished Uni and Steve is a junior surveyor and has been promised his job back when he returns. Rowina is off to York to do a Masters in environmental something so there were lots to talk about. They made me feel very old though, people always ask what's it like running a bank. I wouldn't really know but I know how to run a branch, deal with the moaners and the RSPCA when a seagull is dangling from the security wire on your roof and it's upsetting locals! Really!

Sadly my white water rafting was a no go. I was the only gringo in the whole town who signed up, one of the downfalls to solo travel, you either pay more for trips or you don't go on them. Everyone else in the place had decided on paragliding, but I know I have a 4.5 hour journey to Tunja, then another hour to Villa de Leyva, so I'll have a relaxing morning, find some lunch then head off.

I head out again, I pick up some crisps and some water for my journey and so unlike me, I walk around for a long time eyeing up what to have for breakfast, but my stomach was not happy with anything. In thinking about what to have, I had a cone and one scoop of chocolate ice cream, well it was a wonderful sunny day and I needed to think about what to do. I ended up having a very early lunch. I went back to rib place and had a burger with fries. It was all I could stomach, maybe I'm still feeling odd from the heat at the Angel Falls. It was good.

I realised that I had left my jumper behind in the Internet cafe yesterday, so luckily, even with it being Sunday, they were open. Packed my crap again and grabbed a taxi and headed to bus station. I've no idea when the bus is, but Tunja isn't too far away and there seems to be so many bus companies that one must surely be going. I get my ticket and only have to wait 45 minutes for my bus.

I was a little sad to miss out on some adventure sports, but I'll be in Costa Rica soon and will no doubt pick something up there and maybe feel a little better as well.

Another bus leaves the station and I'm on my way south!
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El on

Disappointing re the rafting - we went with some German group in Austraia....they taught us 'left', 'right' and 'everybody paddle' in German then off we went! Would have been more fun to chat to people though. Glad to see you've got your appetite back! x

kimberly on

Too bad about the rafting. You can always go when you get here!

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