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Day 353 – 26th November 09

Posted by TravellingStrom on November 26, 2009

Thursday – Cartegena, Colombia

I was done by a pro today and was I done

I had a lazy start to the day, brekky over the road the a few hours spent writing some blog stuff, way behind and hard to catch up.

Later in the morning, I needed to change US dollars to pesos, so I went down to the market area and got some cash out of the banks, but they are charging me too much for each transaction, maximum is $150 withdraw and back home I am getting billed $159. So, I had to do this twice just to get enough for the camera and my accommodation bill, then I went into a bank and asked which queue I needed for money exchange, I was told this one. I waited patiently for half an hour and when I got to the teller, he said, nope they do not do money exchange, I have to go to the BanColombia! Well, I was mildly annoyed, but no worries, I went down the street to the BC and I asked a security guard which queue and he said number one. Great, it was down the other end with only two people in it, but when I get there, another guard would not let me in the queue and said they are closed, come back at 2pm, it was now 11.30am!! He played dumb and I had no choice but to leave, pissed off a bit by now.
OK, so I head across the road to look down the other sections of the market, I had time to waste as it happens, and this dude asked if I wanted money exchange, yeah I hear you saying, he is too smart for that, well this dumb sucker got ripped and I was watching for it and never saw it, crikey they took me for a heap.

I won’t go into details at this stage, but I feel a total idiot and am not a good person to be around at this time as I am angry at myself, which will definitely rub off. To top it off, the cleaning lady at the hostel once again hit me up for money and so did another beggar at the door, my view of Cartegena is going downhill rapidly, I am staying indoors after lunch to cool down otherwise this whole Colombian travel experience will be tainted.

I happened to get an email from Bruce who invited me down to the boat for a beer. I said no worries, I had to get my camera that I had ordered at 5pm and meet Vincent at 7pm to grab his photos for me to use. When I went down to the bank later I had to get a cash advance for the cost of the camera(as I was now out of pocket after this morning’s little effort), this all took time and after all this, when I went to get the camera, I was told Manana, or tomorrow!!!! I told him to stick it where the sun don’t shine and left to go meet Bruce. Vincent and Bernice also joined us and we had a few beers on the boat. As you can see V decided to change seats after spending nearly 5 days where I am sitting to take this photo with his camera. We spent a leisurely 2 hours there while the sun went down and the lights came on.

We then went back to the Media Luna where Bruce did the rounds of the hostels to scrounge up some passengers for the return trip to Panama. He had a full load to bring back to Cartegena, but no definite booking for this trip. Us three went and transferred Vincent’s photos to my external HDD which I am grateful for before heading out for a pizza dinner. After this they disappeared while I stopped in at the Havana Club on the corner for a rum or two I thought 🙂 Here I was once again caught out, this time by bad lighting, I ordered a Zacapa Rum, which I thought was 2000p, when the bill came it turned out to be 20,000, so that is $10 a drink, which with the added coke etc, ended up costing me $13 for one rum!! I only had the one! After this I decided to give up, it has not been a good day at all, mainly due to my own fault!

Day 0 miles and 0 km
Trip – 43,486 miles and 69,984 km



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3 Responses to “Day 353 – 26th November 09”

  1. ybg said


    Don’t knock yourself out over this, and don’t let this spoil you views of a country because you fell into a bad situation. Just keep riding and let the wind blow the stench of misfortune out of your hair (that’s a metaphor by the way).


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