Out for a drive south of Chisinau, Moldova. Photo taken December 6, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Purcari Winery, Republic of Moldova.

Where are they going next? Transnistria. The country that doesn't exist! Arrive December 8th.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Change of plans...

We got up yesterday morning all set with a plan to go for a hike to Colombia's highest waterfall. But we made our way down for breakfast to see that it was raining!

So...change of plans. I went to the front desk to see if we could stay here yet another night.

We're not even that thrilled with Bogota, yet we'll have been here a full week when we leave tomorrow morning.

After breakfast we went back to the room and relaxed for a couple of hours. In fact, I even fell asleep again. Some of you have been asking how my rash is, and I'm happy to say that it's getting better every day. The blisters stopped on Tuesday, the day after I started taking medication, and the skin has begun to heal. So that's all good. But I'm still getting some itchiness at night and I'm not sleeping very well. Probably due to the prednisone drugs. Supposed to take them for 8 days, so not long to go.

We left the hostel at about 12:30pm, with a plan to visit a couple more of Bogota's museums. The rain had stopped and we walked towards the Chapinero district, first wanting to see Bogota's Santamaria bullring.

Bogota's Santamaria bullring, built in 1931.

There's been a huge controversy in Bogota since the mayor in 2012 banned bullfighting. It was supposed to be reinstated this year, but they have since decided to do renovations to the bullring and the building is now currently closed to the public. It's a huge ring, seating 14,500 people.

Just around the corner from that is the Colombia National Museum. It was free entrance, which was a good thing because I didn't find it to be a very good museum. I liked the architecture of the building itself better than the displays.

Looks like a prison?

That's because it was a prison. Originally built in 1823, the building had 104 prison cells. Built like a fortress, it was used as a prison until 1946, and it has been used as the National Museum since 1948.

Colombia National Museum.

The Hall of Diversity.

The courtyard in the middle.

Ruth thinks this is a type of amaryllis. 

We weren't a long time in the museum, but it was still almost 3:00pm by the time we got back outside and we hadn't had any lunch. We were looking for something different and I found a Thai restaurant on the iPhone and it was only a few blocks away. But when we got there, it was no longer a Thai restaurant...in fact we're not even sure it was a restaurant at all. 

There are a lot of very inexpensive "daily lunch" specials around, ranging in price from 6,000 to 10,000 pesos ($2.70 to $4.50 CAD) per person. But they're almost all the same....soup, and then a piece of chicken, pork, or beef, with rice and a fried plantain. They do fill your stomach, but they get a little tiring. 

This guy was selling kiwi fruit. Five for 1,000 pesos ($0.45 CAD)!

We had seen a Mexican restaurant downtown the other night, so we walked back over there. Went inside, but right away we could tell this was a tourist restaurant and we sat and looked at the menu before deciding that it was ridiculously overpriced. 

I've learned that you can tell if a restaurant is expensive by the price of a beer. If a beer is between 2,500 to 3,000 pesos ($1.13 to $1.35 CAD) then it's reasonable. Over 3,500 pesos ($1.60 CAD) and it's getting expensive. This Mexican place wanted 8,000 pesos ($3.60 CAD) for a Corona! And 6,000 pesos ($2.70 CAD) for a regular Club Colombia beer. Ridiculous, so we got up and left and I told the waitress it was too expensive for us.

We walked a little further, and came across a nice little restaurant. We looked at the menu and it was also a little pricey, but we were hungry. 

Again, heavy on the meat!

At least we got a small salad with this meal.

Dinner is served. We each chose the grilled beef.

Not bad. Total bill was 59,000 pesos ($26.55 CAD) for the two of us. Our most expensive meal here yet! Again, not bad....but hard to justify versus the daily special meals that are less than half that price.

Haven't looked outside yet, but if it's at all decent, we're going to do that waterfall hike today!

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A great one day deal on a Coleman inflatable kayak...today only!


And in Canada...the Olay Advanced Cleansing System....






17 comments:

  1. Wow that's a lot of meat but looks tasty.

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    1. It looks bigger than it actually was, it wasn't thick. Miss having vegetables with our meal though.

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  2. I bet you will be glad to get back to some fruit and veggies in Mexico!

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    1. Yes, we are so looking forward to that!

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  3. I've decided I don't like Colombia LOL....maybe a visit to the coffee plantations but that's about it. Thank you for taking us on a tour. I thought I'd see lots of vegetable and fruit markets.....but nada.

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    1. I take that back, I did like Medellin and the countryside. I thought Bogota would be a beautiful city with lots of city parks etc. I also like the wax palms.

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    2. We'll try to get some pictures of some fruits and veggies for you Rita. In the big cities you don't'take a camera with you to the markets but it should be better in the little town that we are going to today.

      Even though Bogota has bee the one place we have stayed the longest it is the place we liked the least. At the beginning we stayed because we wanted to see how Kevin's rash reacted to the new medication. After that because we have been having a hard time trying to find available and affordable accommodation in the towns outside of Bogota.

      To us Bogota is an ugly, dirty, noisy and busy city! There have been a few things that have interested us here but that has been it.

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  4. I think I mentioned when you were here that food in South America isn't very exciting. Once you try Mexican it's hard to go back.

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    1. So true Chris! We have had some good meals here and it is hard to balk at the prices but we sure are missing our Mexican food and all the spices that go with it.

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  5. Meh ... I don't eat much beef (or meat in general), so I'd starve to death! :- ] The food in Columbia might be as monotonous as food is the Himalayas.

    Glad to hear your rash is healing, Kevin. And, yes, Ruth is Right -- it's an amaryllis, and very pretty.

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    1. we don't mind having some meat but it is way over board for our liking. We love having veggies with our meal but here it is mostly meat and starch. Looking forward to getting back to our own cooking and to having some wonderful Mexican food.

      Kevin's rash is improving each and everyday now but he still isn't sleeping the best and that might be the result of the Prednisone that he is taking.

      Thanks for the confirmation on the flower.

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  6. Glad to hear your rash is getting better. We have had so much rain in the "dry season" here that I cringe at the word. Hope you get to that waterfall.

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    1. Thanks Sherry,everyday Kevin is seeing some improvement.

      Hope you don't get any flooding from all that rain. We are pretty much finished with the rainy season here now.

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  7. Whenever I get an allergic rash I take Benadryl/diphenhydramine at night to stop the itching and a good night's sleep

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    1. Kevin had tried Benadryl near the beginning of the rash and it did absolutely nothing to help with the itching or the sleeping. The Prednisone has helped considerably with the itching but he can only take it in the morning because one of the side effects is that it keeps you awake. He has one more day on it and can't wait to stop it, it is the one drug that he hates the worst but has helped him the most.

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  8. Thanks for all the information on the restaurant food there. We are very light meat eaters and like a lot of vegetables or purely vegetarian meals, so I don't think we would like Colombia very much.

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    1. You will find restaurants in the cities where you can get some vegetarian meals but in the countryside it is definitely harder. If you want to travel here and eat that way the best thing to do is rent an apartment for a week or two and cook your own meals and then do side trips from there. Colombia is just to beautiful to miss! :-)

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