Near death experience

The bus launches itself at the roundabout at exactly the same moment as a huge truck. A crash seems inevitable. The driver brakes sharply, sending us jerking forward.

I clutch at the seat in front, and gasp with fright. Nobody else reacts at all.

Share this post:Facebooktwitterredditlinkedin

I am here!

rsz medellin

Breaking my previous record of 50 hours door to door (Scotland to Colombia), it took me about 63 hours to get here: Glasgow, Amsterdam, Bonaire, Guyaquil, Quito, Medellín.

Everything feels very familiar; almost as if I had never been away.

Share this post:Facebooktwitterredditlinkedin

Lost in Transition

In the end it wasn’t the ash cloud, but a technicial problem which held me up in Glasgow.

I missed my connection to Panama City, and so Amsterdam joins Lisbon, Johannesburg, London and Miami: the list of places I have had to stay in because of missed connections.

All being well, I travel tomorrow, via Quito, arriving Saturday…

Cushioned by the practices of the airline industry, I have a hotel room, vouchers for food and phone calls, and a day to spend in a wonderful city.

Maybe it’s a gift, rather than an inconvenience.

Share this post:Facebooktwitterredditlinkedin


Flights booked.
Visa granted.
Passport received.
Cases packed.
Library books returned.

Farewell meals eaten.
Goodbyes said.
Tears shed.
Ash cloud…avoided?

God praised.

I leave Glasgow tomorrow morning, all being well.

Share this post:Facebooktwitterredditlinkedin

Conversation on a train

Last week I travelled from Cornwall, the south-west tip of England, to London.
On the way I had a nice chat with a pleasant lady about my parents’ age.

She was interested in my plans to go to Colombia and said, at one point,
It sounds to me like you will be there for the rest of your life.

Share this post:Facebooktwitterredditlinkedin

The Consulate Experience

The people at the Colombian Consulate are kind, competent and courteous.

But they are also clear: the kind of visa I am applying for will take a little longer to process: Instead of a one-to-five-working-day wait, it could take up to two weeks.

Not a major hold-up, just a minor re-adjustment.

Share this post:Facebooktwitterredditlinkedin

With great pleasure

Conversation with a member of staff at the Colombian Consulate in London (my translation).

Me: I need an appointment to apply for a Colombian visa.
Him (surprised – why is she speaking Spanish?): To apply for a Colombian visa?
Me: Yes.
Him: With great pleasure. When suits you? Tomorrow?

It’s not like this for Colombians applying for British visas, and that makes me sad.

Share this post:Facebooktwitterredditlinkedin

3cm by 3cm

Into town today to get my photos (3cm by 3cm, white background) for my visa application. I am the first person the photographer has photographed who needs photos for a Colombian visa.

I do my bit for the Colombian tourist board by saying:
It’s a wonderful country and well worth a visit.

But the photographer only wants to visit Cuba.

Share this post:Facebooktwitterredditlinkedin