Sunday, September 7, 2008

Bogotá Birthday!

So on Friday we went to Aldeafeliz, the ecovillage (ecoaldea) outside of Bogotá. It took a Transmilenio ride, a colectivo ride, and two taxis to get there. Since the city is at such an altitude (2700 meters), as soon as you leave you descend rapidly. Aldeafeliz was tropical, humid, and warm, and at least 1,000 meters below Bogotá. We spent a really lovely day there talking to the ecoaldeanas. They´ve been living there for two years. There are a few communal buildings, for the kitchen, library, and computer stuff, but right now the four residents live in tents scattered over the seven acre property.
On Saturday we came back to Bogotá to meet our friends for drinks. There is a drink here called guaya that consists of a liter of fruit juice and liquor. A liter. Strong liquor! It costs 25.000 pesos, which is about $13. The place we went, Chamois, is a hotspot in the international hipster bar district called the Zona Rosa. By the time we left around midnight, the place was packed with people starting to dance to the live tropical band. Then I went to sleep.
Today we visited Usaquén, an old town in northern Bogotá that has been absorbed over the years into the city. It was very chi-chi, with artisan markets and street performers. Too rich for my blood, but my friends searched around till they found a cheap(er) restaurant for lunch. They wanted Bobby and I to try ahiaco, a popular soup here. It has chicken, vegetables, and capers. It´s somewhat thick like a stew. We also had delicious raspberry juice. Fortunately, I´ve discovered, I can eat fruit and drink the water here with little to no indigestive issues. This is good because the Colombians drink jugos naturales (fresh juices) all day long. Osterizers are ubiquitous here, you can even buy parts for them from street vendors. People chop up fruit, then throw it, skin and all, into the blender. Then they strain the chopped fruit and add water and sugar. Yum!
I should go and stop abusing the hospitality of my friend, who has had us over for a movie and let us use his computer. Our time here is winding down, and I am very happy in this city.