Run for the border

Trip Start Mar 14, 2004
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Venezuela  , Zulia,
Monday, March 14, 2005

The time had come to use the bus ticket I purchased a few weeks ago when I extended my tourist visa, to make a run for the border. I donīt mean Taco Bell, Iīm talking about Venezuela. I needed another stamp in my passport to allow me more time in Colombia and by going to the border of another country, I can get a longer extension than I can in the local immigration office. This past weekendīs trip went quite well actually, and despite some of the tensions between Colombia and Venezuala, the border crossings were impressively smooth and efficient. Venezuela seemed pretty nice and even though I was there for only 10 hours total, I can say this: there is a good reason Venezuela has captured 4 Miss Universe pageants in the last 10 years or so!!! In the words someone else made famous, "Iīll be back."

I caught the 5:30am bus back to Colombia. At the border, my goal was to get a stamp for 90 days, instead of the usual 60. My efforts succeeded, however, after all the lies to the border official I ended up being a student in the University of Magdelena, studying spanish with Professor Mel Gibson (the movie Braveheart was playing in the bus and when he asked me who my professor was, this was the name that just came out.) My ridiculous story worked and I now have a stamp that will let me stay here for 3 more months if I so choose. For now, I plan to continue teaching english and just enjoy my time here. Despite the bad press, this place is awesome and slowly replacing Guatemala and Nicaragua as my favorite countries.

Semana Santa.. the week before Easter... is next week and I will be on vacation from work as everything shuts down for the holiday. I am planning to go somewhere with local friends but right now no one can decide what to do. Thatīs all from here......
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