Bogota was a high. Our longest stop yet, 9 nights and 10 days. After enduring over four months of tropical superheating, our bodies eventually cooled down to within the tolerable range where mammals tend to thrive.
At Claudio´s Casa Ciclista (Cyclist´s House), we had a chance to recharge. After being on the road so long and meeting so many people, it was nice just to be in one place for a few days. I often roamed Claudio´s barrio in the early mornings while Lucie slept in. I´d stop and enjoy an amazing coffee with pastries and just watch the world go by for a change, instead of having the world watch me go by. It´s hard to communicate how regenerative this was for me. In the evenings we´d do a little grocery shopping and cook supper and talk. It was a little like our old life back home, which was really nice. I suppose that´s why they call it a Casa Ciclista; you show up and someone who knows just how you feel gives you the keys and says ¨stay as long as you need.¨
So there you go. Bogota was everything we´d hoped and more. I even got to discover a little of Colombia´s literary world in the capital´s downtown area. Aside from the impressive network of municipal libraries and the Gabriel Garcia Marquez Cultural Centre, there´s an entire neighborhood dedicated to books – stories and stories (ha ha) of tiny booksellers, each specializing in a particular genre or field. I managed to track down a worn copy of Steinbeck´s The Grapes of Wrath. We also got to ride around in the Sunday Ciclovia, where a number of the city´s main streets are closed to cars and open to cyclists. Bogota is a vibrant city where people take their books and their bikes seriously. Naturally, we felt right at home.
Now for the woes. Our laptop screen is shattered. We´re not even sure how it happened. Our laptop is where we store and edit all of our photos, write all of our posts, research our route and keep our blog alive. We just spent the day in an internet café trying to figure out our options. Prepare yourselves for fewer posts and fewer pics until we solve this little problem.
I guess this is the point in the trip where stuff starts breaking – we´ve each replaced a wheel in Colombia, my chain recently snapped, our tent zippers are failing, and so on. We have so few material things with us that we come to rely on them and depend on them. It kind of shakes us up when they start disintegrating. But no thing lasts forever. Only the non-things have that kind of staying power. I guess we´ll lean a little more on the latter for the next few days as we enjoy the last little bit of Colombia.