On the way to Hay – via Bogota
It’s rare for me these days to visit a completely new country. I’m beginning to run out of mainstream options. I think I’ve visited around 104, though I have never been to China (other than Hong Kong) or Brazil.
Today I’m next door, in Colombia – a country twice the size of France with a population of over 40 million. I’m stranded at Bogota. Air France was deliciously, Frenchly, late from Paris (the best way to get here). So I missed my connection to the Hay Festival in Cartagena.
Bogota is cloudy, but it was clear coming here from the Atlantic. 11 hours from Europe. We wouldn’t have wanted a Hudson river job in the middle of that! (See my news on that)
Looking down over the vast open spaces below, one imagines the Farc still farcing around down there – new leadership but a badly battered guerrilla force. You find that there’s been a sort of civil war here for the best part of 300 years.
This is a country of incredible individual wealth in a very few hands and pretty widespread poverty. I guess that explains the fighting. When you land here you realize how little touch we have with Latin America. Fabulous fabrics, jewellery and music.
Still, an airport lounge ain’t the most prepossessing place to blog. I shall have more later today when I reach Cartagena – among other things, how the big wide world looks from down here.
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