Our feet left the ground for the first time today. We caught a taxi to the airport at 7am for our 9am flight to Leticia. Leticia is a small town only accessible by the Amazon or plane. It is the part of Colombia that meets Peru and Brazil.
As soon as we step off the plane we are hit with heat we haven’t felt before. In the air we passed over the equator, and now we are right against the Amazon river. The airport is small, we watch our luggage come in from the plane. We watch a cute happy golden retriever smell every package, suitcase, and bag that come off the plane. This the land of cocaine and illegal drug activity. Colombia’s other exports are flowers, coffee, and bananas. There are a mass of people who look like they are here finding themselves in this small port town that hardly any one has heard of for one spectacular event, the World Cup. A good handful wear jerseys supporting different teams. Mateo gets asked if he is English because of his jersey he wears that is red and white striped much like the England team. USA is just not known for football like Europe is. The line for getting our passports stamped out is long, we must stamp out passports out here at the airport and go and get our passports stamped in at the police station just across the border in Tabatinga, Brazil. Our guy that runs the hostel, where we will be staying is meeting us here at the airport. He brought his friend that helps run a business that schedules boats to run up the amazon to the city of Manaus. This is what our plan is, to take a fast boat to Manaus on the Amazon. You can only schedule in person with cash in hand, and there is a slight chance we are thinking what everyone eles is thinking to make it on that boat. There is a slow boat that takes three days but it would not get us there in time. We go and take the proper amount money out of the ATM in town. It seems like the price has gone up since we looked online at the prices, nearly doubled. There really is no other choice, there are airplanes that go from Tabatinga to Manaus but it is double the price of a boat ride. This is a last option. The guy at the tour agency is going early in the morning to go and pick up our tickets. We will find out tomorrow if it was possible or not possible.
I’m nervous about this, I wanted him to go and do it this evening or maybe Mateo and I do it on our own. I don’t understand the wait, there is also much I don’t know about the situation. We go to Tabatinga to get our stamps. This is our first time in Brazil, the police man at the station stamping our passports had to double take on Mateo’s photo, his beard has grown significantly since we left LA and he hasn’t trimmed it at. He just brushes it with his hands. After returning and eating something we wander around the town and eat some ice cream and relax in the park. Another thing that stresses us out is there is no internet in our hostel, it is down at the moment. We won’t need it until tomorrow, we used it earlier for Mateo and I to transfer money in our accounts. We get some snacks and go back to our hostel for the night and just hangout and read until we sleep and find out the outcome tomorrow.
We headed to Bogota in the most comfortable bus we have stepped foot onto. The ride was long but I ended up sleeping most of the way there. We will only be here two short days before we catch our flight south. It will be weird to get onto an airplane. We love figuring out the busses in most cities, when needed. It livens up our trips. Bogota is huge meaning the bus system is huge as well. The population is at about 10 million. Most of those people ride the bus from what I have seen. We are staying with John, one of Mateo’s friends who is teaching elementary school for two years here in Bogota. Goal for today find his apartment, sleep more, take the bus and eat something sometime. It was nice to meet John, he is a cool guy and it is so awesome to be hanging out with somebody who speaks some English. It feels like home to in a brewery and hang out with Mateo and one of his friends.
We found an awesome bike tour to go on while we were in Bogota! An amazing city with history and art.