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2/27/15 – ORD to BOG

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SARAH HAQUE: It’s time! We finished meeting up as a group and with Prof. Shultz and Prof. Benton the night before. Briefed each other on security, safety, climate, social norms, money etc. all the basics for visiting Colombia. For four of us, (Lisa, Aggeliki, Justine and myself) the flight is early morning on Friday. Finally settling into our assigned seats and between naps we read our Lonely Planet Guides and Spanish Phrasebooks. I started Juan Gabriel Vasquez’s The Sound of things Falling a few weeks prior and found the flight a good time to continue.

Arriving to Bogota 9 hours later with a stop over in Panama, the four of us wipe our eyes and head outside of the airport in bright sunlight where we find our driver ready to pick us up and carry us off to the hotel. Bogota, is the nerve center of Colombia as well as the Capital which made it an obvious first choice to visit. When booking the car with the hotel, Aggeliki recalls them asking, ” Four passengers and luggage? American Luggage?” Yes, American luggage, we all pile in and with little room left, I hop into the front passenger seat ready to see all of Bogota. I try with my broken Spanish and phrasebook to chat with our driver Edgar and he obliges with his broken English and a large grin, all the while Lisa, Aggeliki and Justine trying to help me between giggles. The first thing we notice after the bright sunlight are the mountains! The ANDES! As I keep exclaiming to Justine. Edgar gives us some navigation, ‘The mountains are to the Est (East).” The traffic is heavy which is the first of a continued theme throughout our trip, but the city is bursting with cars, with people on overhead walkways and the Street Art! So much Street Art. Graffiti also has its place in rich Colombian culture starting around the 1960’s and 70’s during much political strife as a way for people to express their views, what is going on and add color to the concrete walls. You are hard pressed to find a bare wall. It is everywhere! I vow to start taking pictures of the graffiti on this trip, it has just begun.


A few links on Street Art and Graffiti in Bogota:



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