At the Purcari Winery in the village of Purcari, Moldova. Photo taken December 7, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Tiraspol, Transnistria...the country that doesn't exist.

Where are they going next? Northern Moldova. Arrive December 11th.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Travel day! It's always an adventure...

Before we left Kolibri Hostel in Pereira, we walked over to the nearby Bancolombia and used the ATM. This time, we hit the button for 600,000 pesos ($292 CAD) and it worked fine. So we seem to have found a bank that works with our Canadian debit card. Two out of two times so far.

We went back to the room and packed things up. The bus to Salento was supposed to leave the terminal at 11:30am, and we wanted to be there early in case it fills up. Supposedly there's not another one until 4:30pm.

Flagged a taxi to take us to the bus terminal. It's so funny using the taxis here. As I've said, they are literally everywhere. I don't think we've ever had to wait more than 60 seconds. And cheap. From the hostel to the bus terminal was 4,200 pesos ($2.06 CAD), and no tip necessary or expected.

Ruth, waiting in the Pereira bus terminal.

Our tickets cost 6,200 pesos ($3.08 CAD) each for the 50 minute bus ride. We were early, as we wanted to be and we had an hour and a half to wait. By the time the bus was loading, there were quite a few other backpacker and white people tourists. In fact, there were very few locals on the bus. The town of Salento is very much on "the gringo trail".

We knew we had to get off the bus before the town itself. But I had put the co-ordinates in the mapping program on the iPhone and so we knew exactly when to ask the driver to stop. From there, it was a ten minute walk to the hostel along a dirt road.

Kevin, walking along the road to the hostel.

This is where our Heys travel bags with the backpack straps come in really handy. Usually we can use them with the wheels and the handle, but on rough terrain you simply unzip the straps and it becomes a backpack! Hard to believe we've had them three years now. They've served us well, but they're starting to show some signs of wear and tear. Might have to look for some new ones next year.

The sign says "Halfway to El Mocambo. Keep going".

We arrived at the beautiful farm. It's an old house and stables that has been renovated into a hostel. Jennifer greeted us and checked us into our room. Cost is 60,000 pesos (29.40 CAD) per night for the two of us. She also explained that there is a free ride into Salento at 8:00am each day, and returning at 7:00pm. And a nice kitchen where we can cook our own meals, or Skyler will prepare dinner for you for 15,000 pesos ($7.35 CAD) each.

The rooms are very small, but hey...we're used to living in a motorhome! Oh, and we have our own private bathroom here.

Ruth, outside our "window".

And inside our window!

It is a farm, so of course there are some farm cats...and kittens!

Looking up the hill towards town.

Beautiful area.

Everything is such a deep color of green.

We went for a walk down to the nearby river, but along the way we must have disturbed some kind of wasp nest. Tiny little wasps, not much bigger than a mosquito. Ruth got stung near her belly button and under her arm...very painful she said, and the sting site swelled up for a couple hours and then subsided to look like a mosquito bite. Fortunately, I didn't get stung since I'm the one who is allergic to bee and wasp stings. When we got back to the room, another of the little buggers flew out of my jacket and I managed to kill it. Hopefully we don't come across them too often!

Pretty boy.

We saw this parrot sitting on the fence and got all excited. They are found in the jungles near here, but we later learned that this one is a pet, belonging to the caretaker here at the property.

The back of the property.

Pretty flowers.

We wanted to go for a walk and I had read that it was about a half an hour into the town of Salento using a path going up the hill. Jennifer confirmed the path up the hill, and off we went. (Edit: It is closer to an hour than a half hour using the path to Salento from the hostel. I've read in two different reports that it's a half hour, but it is not! Closer to an hour.)

El Mocambo Hostel.

Climbing up the steep hill was a tough go, especially where the path was obliterated by some trees they were cutting down. This isn't even the worst of it.

But, we made it to the top of the path and there was a road.

That dog is from the farm...he walked into town with us.

Gorgeous scenery.

Only problem...when we made it into town, we noticed that it was starting to get dark. We had completely lost track of the time. It's difficult when it's cloudy almost all day long and so you don't see where the sun is. Anyhow, no excuses...a dumb mistake. As much as we try, we're not perfect! It turns out that it was already after 4:00pm when we left the farm. And it gets dark here around 5:30pm.

We walked quickly back to the path, but it was getting dark. The path was not easy to do in daylight, let alone in the dark. And when we got to the part with the fallen trees it was downright dangerous. We were very lucky we didn't injure ourselves worse than the small scrape I got on my calf.

Anyhow...never a dull moment around here! Not sure what's on the agenda for today. Ruth seems to have come down with some kind of bladder or kidney infection, so that usually entails a visit to a doctor to get some antibiotics. We'll see how the day goes along...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Always wanted a Kindle e-reader? Now on sale at Amazon.com...


And on Amazon.ca in Canada?




33 comments:

  1. A fun filled day, hope you are better soon Ruth

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not better yet...but hopefully in a day or two when the medication kicks in.

      Delete
  2. Hi Guys. Followed your blog for a while now. Thought it was time to comment. I really appreciate the high-res pictures you post. Such great detail.
    Major winter storm in southern Saskatchewan today. I'm sure you are enjoying much better weather!
    Take care.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for following along Dave. Yes, we also like when a blog puts in decent photos and a way to enlarge them. Never saw the point of putting photos in that you can't make full size.

      Yes...fantastic temps here, but interspersed with some rain.

      Delete
  3. Adventurous day. Hope the antibiotics work well. You find the most interesting places to see! Glad you made it back ok at dusk. Do you ever carry a little flashlight ?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Funny thing, we had just bought one of those headlamp flashlights for this trip and simply hadn't thrown it into our day pack. It's there now!

      Delete
  4. Take care and I hope Ruth is feeling better soon!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Janis...not better yet, but hopefully in a day or two when the antibiotics kick in.

      Delete
  5. Got to love travel days, hope Ruth feels better soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We don't always love travel days, but they can be interesting. Thanks for the well wishes George.

      Delete
  6. Beautiful country & farm. Wishing Ruth a fast recovery. My number one concern when I travel is getting sick or getting injuries. Take care....I know no matter how much you prepare things happen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Rita...yes, sometimes stuff happens that is out of your control. We'll just hole up here for a couple of days and ride it out.

      Delete
  7. Hope you feel better soon Ruth! It's never fun getting sick on a trip :-(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ruth says thanks Esther...you're right, it's no fun...

      Delete
  8. What a neat place! That looks like a place we would say is "right down our alley!" Feel better soon, Ruth!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Connie and Barry. Yes, it's right down our alley too. We've signed on for another two days, hopefully that will be enough for Ruth to recover and get some hiking in.

      Delete
  9. Wonderful scenery, but sorry to hear Ruth is under the weather. Take good care of her, Kevin! Hugs to you both.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Those urinary tract infections happen alot to female travelers. The culprit is "postponing" trips to the bathroom AKA holding it too long to wait for a presentable toilet which is sometimes way too long. Try to get extra pills at the doc's office and ask for refills for future travels. Take one pill when you first suspect an issue as a preventative measure. It works for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it would be good to be able to take an antibiotic right away and we should have done that since they are so readily available. We don't like taking drugs and that's why the hesitation...simply hoping it gets better on it's own. But sometimes that's not the best method...

      Delete
  11. You did good taking the path. Always better to go up and over than around, I always say. As far as it being just a half hour trip, that's simple---you just didn't hike fast enough ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. True...we will hike faster next time to meet the allotted time!

      Delete
  12. Hope you feel better soon, Ruth! Kevin, do you have your epi pen?

    ReplyDelete
  13. Such a lovely place but no fun having a UTI, Ruth. Drink lots of water and I always have a bottle of cranberry tablets with me. I hope you're able to get to a care facility asap. You'll be on my mind. Feel better soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not better yet, but sleeping comfortable now after a bit of a rough morning. Thanks for the well wishes Grace.

      Delete
  14. Ruth, get well soon, yep, get it taken care of soon. Can you tell us one day this trip what all you carry this trip in your backpacks? Curious readers want to know.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, one day we'll tell you what's all in the day pack! Thanks for the well wishes Chris. Hi Juan!

      Delete
  15. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Poor typing skills so I deleted my comment!!

    Gorgeous photos. Looks positively heavenly...Enjoy friends!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Doug and Nancy...we will enjoy it more once Ruth is better.

      Delete
  17. What a charming spot! Looks like a real gem you found there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes it is beautiful spot and so nice and quiet, we have even signed on for a couple more days.

      Delete

We love hearing from you! Please take the time to leave a comment...