Got up at 6:30am. Decided to visit the near by Lover’s Park to see if I could find any birds before breakfast. In the early morning it was very enjoyable in mid-70th. There were not many birds but it has both Caribe and Great-tailed Grackle. It is a good comparison to see their differences and similarities. I wish I had my camera to take a photo when they both were side-by-side. At 8:00am I went to the Basilica nearby. After Salmon Bolivar’s death, his body was kept there for 10 years until it was returned to his birthplace in Venezuela. Later I asked Ines how his body was preserved. She said she does not know. At 9:00am I retuned to the apartment to have breakfast. The caregiver has arrived and was in the kitchen fix something for Ines. She is ash typical Colombian, very stern and not smile at all. I asked her for a bowl and a plate. She opened a cabinet. I saw some ceramic ware there and asked if I could have those. She answered “No”, then handed me some plastic ones. Well, they will do. Later, Ines offered me a cup of home brewed coffee. It is interesting to note that in Colombia people do not use coffee maker but a special tin/aluminum cup to boil water with a filter containing grinded coffee. It was delicious. Ines showed me the patio. It has a 360-degree view and I could see the Caribbean Sea, the city and the mountain. There is where I will spend most of my time when I am at the apartment.
I went out at 10:00am to Marina. I saw a youngmen who was picking up trash from the shore and the water. Later he told me he is among 18 divers that clean the beach once a month. What a nice community service. I wonder why other people who were around did not join in but just watching. They seemed like fisherman. There were a makeshift fish market. I took some photos. There were about 30 snowy Egret that were waiting for handouts. At 11:00am I was hungry and went to a restaurant by the sea to have a glass of pineapple juice and a shrimp cocktail. Strangely the shrimp came not with usual cocktail sauce but a thick thousand Island salad dressing. From the 2nd floor I saw a few small boats with passengers. I asked the waitress about it. She said it is 45 minutes ride for about $4. I went to join one. It was a very nice ride with my hand in the Caribbean Sea. The water was warm at least upper 70th. Some people were swimming in the bay also. There was a large ship with Dole Colombia sign. I suppose that Dole probably has pineapple plantation in Colombia. After returning I walked over to the Gold Museum. It is a well-done museum and it is free. It also has a section dedicated to Simon Bolivar. When I got out, it was already 2:00pm. In a nearby restaurant I ordered a fish plate for lunch. Then, I hired a taxi to take me to Quinta de San Pedro where Simon Bolivar died.
This was a house owned by a sugarcane farm owner. It has a large house, botanical garden and a new section of Bolivar museum. I went to the old house first. It showed some personal items of Bolivar such as his hat, the bed where he died of tuberculosis, the horse coach that Bolivar rode, etc.. There were many Colombians. The new Bolivar museum is very modern and nice. I spent the rest of the time in the garden to try to look for birds. Indeed, it has birds despite the hot weather about 100F. Besides Bi-colored Wren and Yellow-backed Oriole, I saw my lifer of Collared Puffbird, Yellow-fronted Parrot, Orange-chinned Parakeet and Ruddy Pigeon. I returned to the apartment at 5:30pm. After a shower, I went back to the Marina to a tourist office that I saw this morning. I paid for a tour to a beach inside the Tyrona national park called Bahia Concha for tomorrow. After a Sashimi and mixed seafood ceviche dinner, I went back to the apartment.
I am looking forward to the trip tomorrow.