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Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Day 371 Wednesday April 30, 2014

Since my last post a lot has happened. I am now in Villa de Leyva Colombia. Today is day 3 of a national strike by farmers, coffee workers, and transportation workers. Villa de Leyva is at the epicenter of this strike. Last year Colombia experienced a similar strike that lasted 12 days and turned quite ugly. During last years strike 5 people were killed and nearly 500 injured. Here in Leyva it is quiet, but many of the roads into town are barricaded. Foreigners are advised not to travel and hotels here are advised not to take foreigners. I am the only person still at this hostel. The road from Leyva to Chiquinquira was reportedly open this morning and the other 12 travelers that were staying here hired a van to take them there. I will monitor the situation today and may try to leave tomorrow. My plan is to travel to Medellin where I have arranged a place to stay at the Shamrock Irish Pub which is owned by fellow biker Albert Crutcher. Albert is a Scotsman from Crawford, TX who lives in Medellin (go figure?).

The leg and ankle are still improving and have given me little trouble for the past 10 days. I am walking from 2 to 5 miles a day with little discomfort and no swelling. This is the last time I will mention it...hopefully.

I am now the last biker that sailed from Panama to Cartagena on the Starhlratte still in Colombia. The rest are scattered through Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Chile.

Here a few photos taken from the ride from San Gil to Villa de Leyva.

This is a photo of Glen Short and myself. Glen and I are FaceBook friends and we met up here in Leyva. Glen is from Australia and has lived abroad for 12 years mostly in South America and India. He is traveling on a 250cc Chinese bike. I really like Glen's style.

These shots are from The Fossil Museum outside Leyva. The El Fósil museum has an almost complete kronosaurus fossil on display, in the same place in which it was found in 1977.

The kronosaurus fossil is the main attraction here.

Saturday is market day here. The market here in Leyva is a traditional local market and was very interesting.

These photos are of the "Casa Terracotta" called the mud house which is a 40 minute walk from the plaza. The construction of the mud house began in 2007 and is still ongoing. It is the project of an architect from Bogota. No one has ever lived in the house.

 These photos are from the Santo Ecce Homo Monastery about 25km from Leyva.

More will be revealed...

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Day 363 Tuesday April 22, 2014

I have good news to report...the leg and ankle are much improved. A friend took me to see a local pharmacist. He examined the leg and ankle and prescribed an anti inflammatory. Within a few hours the leg was better. I was given 12 tablets and instructed to take one tablet every six hours, which I did. After three days of taking the drug my leg felt almost 100% ready for travel. Two days after I finished taking the drug the ankle had become stiff again, but it is much better than before and continues to progress.

I am planning to leave San Gil tomorrow and ride to Villa de Leva. It should take about 4 or 5 hours not counting photo opportunities along the way. I have very much enjoyed my time in San Gil, it has been an excellent place to recuperate and take a break. Hotel Abril, where I have stayed since arriving, was packed during Semana Santa. The Colombian people travel much within their country and Holy Week is a major holiday. San Gil was overflowing with tourists for the week. Many were from Bogota and Bucaramanga, escaping the city for a week.

Settling into a place like San Gil has brought on a kind of familiar complaisance. Not a bad thing, but not what the ADVenture is about...or, is that exactly what it is about? I seem to be in a pattern where this ADVenture is not one long trip, but many trips. After three weeks here I have fallen into a life of routines. Again, not a bad thing. Much of the past 60 years of this life has been lived in one routine or another and the ADVenture has proven to be a way to experience life outside the normal. This simi-vagabond lifestyle has a way of stripping away the illusions of security and control and leaving in it's place contentment. Maybe Buddha and Jesus were onto something...?

"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it." ~ Helen Keller

More will be revealed...

A few photos from the past week.