My day off was spent hanging out in the house, but in the afternoon I went to the main shopping centre – Ventura Plaza – to change the money I would need for my month or so in Venezuela. In nearly every country I’ve been to so far, I’ve not had to worry about that and just withdrawn money from the cash machines in country thanks to my N&P (now Yorkshire) debit card where they don’t charge me for international usage. That would continue in Venezuela, but for one
I had the pleasure of José and his uncle joining me on the ride out of Duitama up and over the first climb of the day to the town of Belen, where we stopped for a second breakfast and coffees. After they left, I had a couple of hour climb up to another barren páramo – moor – landscape and at times it just made me think of being in Yorkshire. It’s strange the way we make that link between a place we are and a place we hold dear. The quietness of the road with light rolling hills
During my trip back home, I managed to replace a few things that had taken a good battering so far on the trip. That included the 35L dry bag that I use to store my tent and sleeping bag which had reached the point where it was only mildly water resistant as it had so many holes, the bell which had lost one of it’s sides back in Cancun, my laptop battery which lasted barely more than 90 minutes instead of the 6 hours originally, and the sunglasses that had been crushed in a train door a
I arrived in Bogotá knowing I’d not be cycling for a little while so was happy to cycle round on my days off. Bogotá being quite bike friendly and Oscar, my host, loving to ride helped too. The highlights were going up to the local hill of Monserrate to get a great view of the city, visiting the simply amazing Museo del Oro (museum of gold) and going to a Millonarios football game. As well as that we went to the botanical gardens and rode around enjoying the ciclovía
It was around 7am by the time I stirred and, thankfully, Nevado del Ruiz was still visible. Juan Carlos had said he’d come over to see me, so while I was waiting I worked on editing my photos and writing the blog entries so I’d have them ready to post the next time I had internet. By the time he arrived at 9 I was almost up to date, showing just how much time it takes to get this thing done. I think I might start with less rambly posts.
There were two university students who had also