Day 25/164: Rest Day Two in Agustín

It was nice sleeping in a bed and waking up, and being able to have a warm shower. I had better make the most of today as there are six days riding before the next rest day, with four days riding until we cross the border into Ecuador.

Today a group of us had organized to go to St Agustin archaeological park. The park opened in 1936 and is constantly being improved. It is based on the site where statues from previous inhabitants of this land have been found.  There is no known name for these people so they are referred to as the early culture of San Agustin. There are two schools of thought:
1. That it was one people who evolved over a few thousand years to following different practices and customs (such as how they bury their dead)
2. That there were 3 separate groups of people during this time (approximately 3,500 BC to 100 AD).

At some stage they have organized an elaborate irrigation system for the hillside to grow crops.

The earliest inhabitants had the practice of burying their dead under the floor in the middle of their houses. Further on the rich, or high standing, had tombs with statues depicting various significant animals and things such as water and people guarding them. There was one bit of hillside that over 700 years they flattened – bit different to now where it is a project we undertake over a long weekend. The earliest evidence uncovered at this stage dates back to 3,500 BC.

4521767

Statues at the cultural village in St Agustin

3866938

Cultural village in St Agustin

2457150

San Agustin archaeological park

2222962

Statues at the cultural village in St Agustin

The walk around the park took about 3 hours, and we stopped at a cafe where one of the riders – Erwin – asked for a drink of cane sugar, and we got to see how they feed it through a flattening machine about 4 to 5 times, and it produces enough for a glass. It is a greeny colour and tastes really sweet, but is meant to be very good for rehydration.

2019955

Sugar cane and machine that grinds them into sugar cane juice

Editor's Caption: And now for a photo where you can actually see the machine (Photo credit: Of course, Sue's blog)

Editor’s Caption: And now for a photo where you can actually see the machine (Photo credit: Of course, Sue’s blog)

The cane sugar drink is in the plastic cup next to Erwin

The cane sugar drink is in the plastic cup next to Erwin

We caught a bus back down to the town and four of us stopped at a restaurant for lunch. We got the special of the day, which was a really nice meat based soup with beans and carrots in it, plus I think spinach as was quite dark for cabbage. Also a main of chicken which is sliced so thinly they must have a special machine to do it (as this is common way of presenting cooked chicken here), rice, and my favourite – fried plantain (not), some type of peas, and chunks of potato with avocado (which sounds pretty strange but was actually very nice).

Erwin and Sue at lunch

Erwin and Sue at lunch

Couple who own the restaurant we went to for lunch

The couple who own the restaurant we went to for lunch (Editor’s note: classic Kaye photo)

Then I went off into the town to get a haircut. I was pretty nervous about this but I can’t go 6 months without a cut. And having done it, I don’t have to worry about it again for a few months. It turned out ok, and was the grand sum of 6,000 pesos (approximately $3 NZD). The last time my hair was cut for 3 dollars I was probably about 2.

On the way back to the hotel I stopped to try something I had seen for sale in the village. Not sure what you would call it. The lady making it was slapping it round and round on a stick, it looked like it had golden syrup or molasses in it. You got a small pottle of it, after it had been dipped in brown or raw sugar. I’m still not sure what it was, it was thick and sticky and sweet. I am not a convert, but the locals were lining up for it.

The lady making toffee like stuff

The lady making the toffee like stuff

Then I went back to the hotel to check on the instructions for tomorrow, and to sort my bike and bags.

A group of us went to a restaurant in town, and ordered the special of the day again, which this time was a thick soup, and chicken, rice and beans. After that I went to the supermarket to get more water.

I got back to the hotel and tried to get onto the wifi – it was ok to send an email but not any photos.

Tomorrow is a 161 kilometre ride, with 2,250 climb, so lunch truck to lunch for me 😀

By a statue in the cultural park (not long before the $3 haircut)

By a statue in the cultural park (not long before the $3 haircut)

View of country side San Augustine

View of country side San Agustin

Coffee place in San Augustin - riders Peter from NZ and Anna Greta from Denmark

Coffee place in San Agustin – riders Peter from NZ and Annegrete from Denmark

Same coffee shop in San Augustin ( Asha from USA and PHil NZ)

Same coffee shop in San Agustin (Asha from USA and Phil from NZ)

Type of bus that the locals catch around the country

Type of bus that the locals catch around the country

Side view Of the type of bus locals ride in around the countr

Side view of the type of bus locals ride in around the country

View of back street in San Augustin

View of back street in San Augustin

Street in San Augustine

Street in San Augustine

Modes of transport range from horse and cart to trucks

Modes of transport range from horse and cart to trucks

Coffee beans on a plant in Columbia

Coffee beans on a plant in Columbia

It's a dog's life (Photo and caption credit: Sue's blog)

It’s a dog’s life (Photo and caption credit: Sue’s blog)

Advertisements
Categories: Columbia, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

Post navigation

2 thoughts on “Day 25/164: Rest Day Two in Agustín

  1. Imad Aljanabi

    Nice hair cut Kaye, have fun and enjoy your time, plenty of rain and cold in Wellington

  2. Ah Colombia just looks fantastic. Can’t wait to get there myself. When you get to Ecuador try Locro de papa – it’s a cheesy potato and avocado soup and yum!

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: