Gastronomique Tour de Colombia v2.8

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I’m done.  I don’t want to be here any more!!  I’ve done what I can and it’s up to them to finish it up and tweak and what not….

SO it was a nice break from the 2 weeks of work to have a SUNNY day and a brief trip to Montserrat!

For those that don’t know…from Wikipedia:

Monserrate (after Catalan homonym mountain Montserrat) is a mountain that dominates the city center of Bogotá, the capital city of Colombia. It rises to 3,152 metres (10,341 ft) above the sea level, where there is a church (built in the 17th century) with a shrine, devoted to “El Señor Caído” (Fallen Lord).
The hill is a pilgrim destination, as well as a tourist attraction. In addition to the church, the summit contains restaurants, cafeteria, souvenir shops and many smaller tourist facilities. Monserrate can be accessed by aerial tramway, a funicular or by climbing, the preferred way of pilgrims.
All downtown Bogotá, south Bogotá and some sections of the north of the city are visible facing west, making it a popular destination for watching the sun set over the city.

D and I headed there Thursday morning.  One of the drivers took us to the Teleferico that takes you to the top of the mountain.

As you’re waiting to board the cable car to the top of the mountain, you get to see this ^ and this:

GORGEOUS!  I mean just look at all those hydrangeas!  I took this one for Mom.  *waves*

There’s a train you can take…and stairs.  *snort*  Um…yeah.  Like I’m going to be taking the stairs.  30 minutes or 2 hours depending on how in shape you are.  Me?  Probably more like 2 days.  LOL

Okay… so…Can I just say….  W O W!  I mean like HOLY WOW!  I don’t think I’ve seen a view like this in YEARS!  I honestly don’t think I’ve seen a view like this…

and this:




Heh.  Yeah that’s my dorky pic with Bogota in the background clutching my new clutch with a grip of death.

There’s a church up there that offers mass services:



And there’s street vendors.  There’s some restaurants,  but we didn’t see those.  MI said she was going to take us for arepas, so we didn’t stay too long.  I mean, it was just the two of us and one can only be wowed so much in the course of a day before they’re just on overload.  And, can I also say, THIN AIR!  Walk two steps gasp…two more, gasp again.  It’s 10,341 ft up.  I was afraid that I would start having the same side effects as I did the first day in Bogota, so I didn’t want to stay too long for that reason, too.  D bought something for his mother.  I didn’t see anything really worthwhile.  It seemed like all mass produced touristy type chochtkies.  I think we were there about an hour maybe?  On the way back down, I had a better window view of the trip.




I was amazed at how tall the trees are.  Even in the downtown area, they are T A L L!  Just crazy!

I took pictures on the way back to work:


There’s a law that only allows cars with license plates that end in even numbers to be on the road on certain days and vice versa.  Meaning, if you’re plate ends with an even number you can drive on say like a Monday and odd is Tuesday, etc.  There’s one day where only buses  diplomats, and taxis can be on the road.  It’s a very interesting concept, but that means that buses like this one are P.A.C.K.E.D!!

And there are these structures that go across the highways you can get from one bus stop to the other across the highway.

Okay, on to arepas.  They are similar to corn pone or corn cakes?  I think?  But MUCH better!  And there are so many different types.  There’s thin ones, thick ones, filled with meat and cheese, topped with meat and cheese.  The ones we had at El Poblado were like biscuit sized and just fried.

They were served with chicarrones e chorizo.  Nomnomnom!  The chicharrones were FAB-ulous.  Authentic and not what we think of AT ALL!  I think I ate most of my lunch in chicharrones.  I didn’t quite understand the menu all that well.  I should have just had the frijoles con carne, but went with the bandeja pasia.

Yes that IS a fried egg, than you for asking!  So, the stuff behind the rice is fried plantain.  The stuff under the rice is carne asada which is SUPER ground to a fluffy almost powder type texture.  The frijoles are HUGE pinto beans type things.  I’ll have to see if I can find those beans here as they were HUGE!  There’s chorizo on the left and some black, rice filled sausage on the right.  It was weird, so I didn’t eat it but a few bites.  And then there’s the chicharrones on the far right.  I ate all of that, the beans the rice, most of the carne asada, half the chorizo, the egg and a few bites of plantain.  In other words, about half of it?  Maybe less?

And I was so stuffed, I didn’t eat dinner.  Well, I should say I drank it.  In Chilean wine.  Two glasses….  I for the life of me can’t remember what it was.  It was good, though.  I know it had a Z in it.  That’s about it.

*sigh*  One more day….

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