Thursday, February 08, 2018

Final: Day 8: Bogota

Today is the last full day of my trip. I'm going to see Bogota.

I tell the hotel doorman that I want to see the Gold Museum downtown. He calls a white Renault Duster taxi cab for me. The driver is a woman (rare) and is wearing a smart suit and driving gloves.

Bogota is a large, sprawling city of eight million. It's very clean and I only saw two instances of graffiti. The first graffiti said "SMOKE WEED".

The Museo de Oro (Gold Museum) was much lauded, but I was not particularly impressed. I'm pretty sure 99.9% of the pre-Columbian gold was melted down and shipped off to the Netherlands to pay off Spain's war debts.

The long caterpillar buses outside, though, were impressive.

The Santa Clara church was fairly magnificent and a colossal waste of resources. All the tourists were French.

I then walked over to the central plaza.

Government crowd control barriers with Transparency emblazoned on them.

The other instance of graffiti I saw was political. This guy was not a fan of the current president.

I felt bad for this old timer with the faded red vest. He was selling photographs for five dollars. I thought he had a Polaroid. Nope. He had me stand next to the Simon Bolivar statue. He took a photo with a Canon digital camera. He then connected it to a Canon Selphy printer (inside a custom made wooden box) and printed out the photo for me. I was amazed and shook his soft hand.

I have ajiaco for lunch. It's chicken soup with cream and giant capers. There's also a corncob inside the soup. The corn was meaty and bitter. This is supposed to be the best example of ajiaco in town. It was bland.

The highlight of the day was the National Police Museum. This painting was in the lobby.

A saddle for female cops. They are supposed to ride sideways, so as to not mar their "youth".

Every portable walkie-talkie used by the Colombian police.

Every type of tear gas used by the Colombian police.

Every firearm ever used by the Colombian police. This museum is incredibly comprehensive.

The tile on which Pablo Escobar died. The dark stain is his dried blood.

I finished the day with a meal at WOK, a popular pan-Asian Bogota chain. The Thai basil chicken was easily the best meal I had in Colombia. I enjoyed the Chilean chardonnay as well.

Well, that's it. Thank you all for following along with me over all these years. I have plenty of notes and have started doing background research and hope to write a book detailing my journeys. It is my intent to weave the trips with all the major events of my life. I hope to give the audience a unique perspective on my travels, from a Chinese-American immigrant who majored in Latin American Studies.


Blogger 3133 said...

Excellent write-up and a good journey.

Lukas said...

Cool write-up and trip. thanks for sharing (and welcome back to reality).

@slirt said...

i did not know you majored in LatAm Studies! that explains a bunch 🕵️