Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Santa Marta, Simon Bolivar, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez

We left early Saturday morning for Santa Marta for a 10:00 session to present our presentations to District andBranch and Relief Society presidencies. As was our practice on this trip, we arrived late, got things set up, gave the presentations, and were finished before noon. We went to a nice shopping center with a nice food court (Terraza de Comida) and had lunch with the District President, his wife, and a counselor. Santa Marta is a smaller city with the best beaches with the whitest sand in Colombia , mostly relying on tourist trade. Santa Marta is really Gabriel Garcia Marquez country. His boyhood home town (not Macondo but Aracataca) is nearby as is the Magdalena River, featured in many of his novels. The wife of the district president had read a lot of Garcia Marquez's works and we had a good conversation about them. After lunch we drove to the estate where Simon Bolivar, the Great Liberator, after having been exiled from Bogota, was living when he died in 1830. He actually was on his way to Spain but never made it. He stayed at an estate called the Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino which has been very well preserved and restored. Most of the furniture, etc. were those actually used by Bolivar, except his sword which actually is owned by the Venezuelans and frequently brandished by our new best friend, Hugo Chavez. A sweet young high school junior was our guide, pointing out such things as 400 year old trees and large iguanas on the lawn. By the time we left the Quinta, we barely had time to make our flight back to Bogota, literally running the whole way to the airplane after arriving at the air port.


  1. Did you actually ride in that bus?????? I am very impressed. Such fun pictures!!!

  2. Love the pictures and the posts! Such an adventure!