Coffee country

Trip Start Aug 17, 2008
Trip End Aug 16, 2009

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Flag of Colombia  ,
Monday, December 15, 2008

After Popayan our plan was to head to Cali and then west towards the coast and a little town called San Ciprano. Here the locals invented some type of small motorbike-driven train carraiges to drive on the tracks to nearby towns and they play some crazy soccer everyday in unusual random footwear and with constant arguing from the lack of referee. When we got to Cali however, b*ses were too expensive so we carried on north for the small town of Salento in the zona cafeteria. The hostel there is the english owned Plantation house, which like the rest of the town, would not look out of place in the nineteenth century. There is a great atmosphere around the town with the locals wearing wellies and ponchos and constantly welcoming you. We went to a bar where they play a game called tejo that involves triangles of gunpowder placed upon a steel ring set in a mud square. Disc shaped stones are thrown from a distance and when they hit the gunpowder it goes off like a bomb, taking years off your life.
We went trekking through the Cocora valley with a group from the hostel. Eight of us packed into a small jeep any way we could for the forty minute drive to the valley for the hike. The trail was a very muddy path and after four hours, seven bridges and lots of humming birds we were ready for bed. So we tore in to some rum and coke and hit the town which was buzzing for the weekend but closed down completely at two a.m leaving us wanting, but some beer back in the hostel satisfied our thirst. We were well prepared though from the huge group meal we cooked with our hiking buddies. The locals are a mad bunch and very welcoming and it was a great night.
The next morning, Tim the English hostel owner gave us a tour of his coffee farm beside the hostel, telling us all about the coffee process which was very interesting.
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