06 December 2011
El Final Día en Cartagena
I woke up, mowed down un desayuno tipico, and headed out on my merry way. The level of tourists had reduced considerably, and I felt like I was experiencing a more "true" Cartagena.
I decided to put myself on a little "Love in the Time of Cholera" tour, so my first stop was Fermina Daza's house and the bench from which Florentino Ariza watched her...also known as the Parque de Ferdinand Madrid. We had been there a few nights before when we went to the Wiskeria Zorba, but I loved seeing it during the day. I could imagine Florentino writing love poems from this little bench underneath the lush trees, pining in the heat for his crowned goddess. At the same time I was t asking this flight of fancy, there was a huge argument ensuing between an older woman, a male driver, and the police. When I arrived, there were only about 5 people involved...after I had walked around a bit, there were probably 20 or so, and the argument had moved around the block.
After that, I think I walked up and down every street in the walled city. I loved it. I got to see people lounging, people at work, tourists getting screwed, mass in session, tourists enjoying themselves...I feel like I finally got a good sense of the city, and it was lovely.
I felt I had to try as mush of the street food as possible...but it was so hot I wasn't ever hungry in the least. But I was thirsty, and I had the most delicious orange juice (.50$). Then, I finally had a small appetite, and chowed down on some underripe (delicious) mangos with salt,pepper, and lime (1$). It SO hit the spot. I continued my wandering, and eventually decided I should head back to my hotel for one last pool afternoon-- as someone who lives in SF and is from the inner Bay Area, a pool is a real treat! -- I found this cool bar in an old fortress part of the Wall. It wasn't open, but the security guard let me take a look and take some pics (I put the self-timer on for the one above). That as about two blocks from our hotel.
Instead of heading back though, I decided to gab some money. From the ATM, then get some coconut water. Coconut water is a rather new thing in the states (at least...it's suddenly more popular), and while it is not my favorite, it looked so delicious in its bolsita (little bag). And, .50$ later, it was soooo yummy!
I headed back to the pool for a few hours, reading the Steve Jobs biography...I was pretty into it and had a hard time tearing away! For dinner we went to a little German bar then back to the Wiskeria Zorba for a nightcap. Eventually, it was time for bed, since our flight to Bogota was early this morning.
I must say...while I am not sure I would ever go back, my last day definitely gave me a case of the smittens with Cartagena!