Leaving our hotel was an ordeal. Taxis had to be called in advance, dogs had to be retrieved, bags had to be repacked, and good bye’s had to be said. The trailer was in a storage, place, thing that was a good deal away from our place of lodging. Momma and Papa called up two taxis to transport us; we then tied the dogs onto the roofs of our chartered vehicles and headed towards our mobile home. It was a long and slightly uncomfortable drive due to the number of people stuffed into the seats.
The trailer was in this dirt lot surrounded by semi trucks and broken glass. Someone stole the license plate off of the trailer while it was stationary. After a few minutes of doing something (I forget exactly what we were doing) we were off and heading out of Cartagena.
It took longer than I would have liked to leave the city; in retrospect Cartagena was kind of horrible and nasty. A few wrong turns were made but we eventually we got out onto the country side. The day was starting to turn into the night by the time we got to this one town where a police officer stopped us and almost took my father’s passport away because our windshield was cracked. After taking care of the cop, we pulled out of town and headed towards the next. All along our way we past plenty of military check point things and toll booths. It was now dark and we were pulling into yet another town. We took a few lefts and a few rights and then boom, we were stuck in the middle of the main road. A kind stranger helped us out of our trap and took us to an empty lot where we could rest for the night. This lot was framed by the Pan American highway on one side, and by a small bunch houses on the other. We were parked for about an hour and already a crowed of interested children had gathered right outside our door. Mother invited them in and then the crowd grew from fifteen kids to fifty four mixed aged peoples. We gathered outside and were fed fruits that grew in the area. I am most certainly not fluent in any other language other than English so communicating was difficult. I have loved llamas since the day I was born and when a girl said something about llamas to me, I sort of got really excited and happy, until I learned that ‘llama’ means phone and she really just wanted my phone number. Anywho. The night went well and we were invited to eat breakfast with them tomorrow. We woke up and headed out to meet up with our new friends. Someone took a toucan bird out of their house, you probably don’t know this about me but I have been drawn toucan birds for years so this was also really exciting for me.
The people who were feeding us had a really nice and big sound system. Our breakfast consisted of cheese, bacon, bollos, guacamole, and juice. It was then time for us to go, we went into our van and then headed off for new lands.
The new lands we headed towards were just as painfully hot as the lands before it. We took a wrong turn down a horrible road for a good thirty minutes until we realized what we did. Once back on the right road, we passed through a ton of small, colorful towns. The first five or so had about fifty booths selling hats and baskets, and then the other towns had mostly fruit stalls. That night we camped inside a parqueadero.
When we awoke we started to ascend up the mountains to a cooler, more enjoyable, temperature. The mountain drive was awesome. Houses were built on top of stilts that stuck into the sides of cliffs. The valleys were covered in fog, and the cliffs were covered in thick, green, pretty, jungle foliage. I spent most of the ride looking for monkeys out the window but sadly there weren’t any. Once we made it over the top of the one mountain we were on, we came to a small town which we then drove through. We descended until dark and stopped in Santa Rosa for the night and Santa Rosa is where I am writing this from. I think I’ll go now. Merry Christmas.