Hello, Corinna here.
I am excited. I feel that sense of heightened awareness that I had forgotten comes with new places…it’s the sense that makes you feel everything more strongly; the awe of the sunsets, the thrill at the local festivals, the ‘ahhhhhhh’ of dipping into the local hot spring… But also the constant effort of staying aware of your surroundings and speaking spanish. Eventually it exhausts you, but without it everything wouldn’t feel so raw, so real. I love it. I love this feeling.
I arrived in Bogota last night around 9 pm and managed to get to my hostel by 1030. The gangway to the airplane in Atlanta was lined with Border patrol cops and drug sniffing dogs. But arrival in Colombia went off smoothly despite the long lines. The immigration officer asked me where I was staying and stamped my passport. None of the usual, how long will you be here, why are you here, whats your occupation…simple.
I found a hostel in the Calendaria section of Bogota- it was lonely planet (LP) recommended (LP is our travel bible). Now, a bunk bed in a dorm room of a hostel tends to run abut USD$9 in Colombia. But a private room often about USD$12 or 15 so Cam and I very rarely stay in dorm bunks. It’s been a long time since I slept on the top of a bunk bed, let alone in a room with 10 other snoring strangers. But it was a place to sleep and when I finally woke up at 11 am, eye mask and ear plugs still in place, I was the only person in the whole hostel still in bed. =) oops.
Off to a tiny pueblo in SW Colombia today to meet Cameron and use as a jumping off point for crossing the Ecuador border. I’ll write more when I’ve actually been OUTSIDE the walls of a hostel in the daylight. =)