Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Not the Colombia we used to hear about

La Piscinita Beach, Tayrona National Park, Colombia

Watercolour and crayon

©2010 Charlene Brown

When our ship docked at Santa Marta in Columbia, I went on an excursion to Tayrona National Park on the Caribbean coast. We climbed up through clouds (of steam, I think) swirling through a jungle of dracaena, philodendron, and other ‘houseplants’ as big as houses, palms and red-crowned Poinciana trees, then down to this spectacular boulder-strew beach. These huge rocks have been rounded, cracked and are being rounded again, into unique and very paintable shapes.

Not one of us was beaten up, kidnapped or recruited to take cocaine anywhere. In fact I’d forgotten all about ‘that’ Columbia until our guide asked if we were surprised at all. He went on to say that things have been changing for the better ever since the present government came into power eight years ago. They have another election coming up at the end of this month – we’ll see how it goes…