What I assumed- that I would have been in Colombia in May 2012.. back when I was in America estimating the time of my journey.
Well… expect the unexpected.
Colombia! Por fin!!!
After one week in lovely Cartegena, we returned to the road as a first day cycling in South America!
It was back to the usual..
El Campamento/ Camping
El Almuerzo / Lunch
Buenas Vistas/ Nice Views
We spent so many days on the road. Paul declared a break, and got us a hotel in this cute little town center, Yarumal.
Amigos en la Carretara / Friends on the road
Wow! We met so many cyclist on the road in Colombia! World travelers were:
And as usual.. looking strange/ Extraños
The military guys were amused over out get-ups. They even tried out the bikes.
There were some mechanical adjustments, too..
On the highway between small sleepy towns, Paul met a guy who was holding a cute, furry little creature.
Of course, we fell in love with this baby sloth. We traded off holding him, adoring him. When asked, the guy said it was his pet… LIAR! and a thief! Turned out that this was an illegal peddler selling off a sloth for about $40 American bucks. Come to find out (thanks to Leslie for sharing the article) that these precious creatures are in grave danger in Colombia, as the babies are being kidnapped from their moms. according to this article, the babies suffer from lack of nutrition and stress without their moms in their first half year of life. Many of them end up dying (according to the article) I feel some guilt that I didn’t do much other than held it, maybe should have gone to the police (but we were out in middle of no-wheres-ville, without phones). I did contact Tinka Plese of the AIUNAU sloth foundation who was linked to in the article, and informed her of this encounter. She says there is no support coming from the government, and the penalties are weak- house arrest. Lets hope the future of baby sloths will be more respected and that illegal hunting will be punished by supporters. For the love of sloths!
It took us a long two weeks to cross the north from Cartagena to Medellin. Coming from the coast, we suffered from hot tropical weather, until we reached the foothills of the Andes. It was April 1st when we climbed up into the Andes. In days, we were in the clouds, the air was fresh and cooler (yay!). We paused for a day and overnight in a town name Yarumel.
Following was the route to Medellin. Have to say ,this part of the route was gorgeous, in the mountains between Yarumal and Medellin. The forest was a rich, cool jungle, colors of fall faded gold, greens, (even light blue leaf trees!) and exotic tropical flowers that grew wild or decorated an exotic front yard home.
It was a bright morning as we reached the summit overlooking Medellin. A group of mountain bike boys challenged us to race them down the road. It was a long and fun downhill ride to the center of the city. Now we got to look for our host…
More to come! Our week in Medellin…