Being in the Walled City reminded me of the 1984 movie "Romancing the Stone" with many of the scenes filmed on the wall. We started the day at Juan Valdez Cafe after a lukewarm shower. The Juan Valdez shop name came from a fictional character for US coffee drinkers. The shop has 100% Columbian coffee and some bakery goods. The cafe was packed with locals and tourists. Many university students were there getting their morning coffee. We walked the streets and walked through the Centenario Plaza where we saw iguanas and even sloth making it's way from tree to tree. There were groups of people taking walking tours. Carmen and I just walk on our own and look up items of interest. We walked to the Getsemani neighborhood with graffiti / murals wall. This was an area that had former prostitution and drugs that now is a tourist interest area. Some of the murals are political statements that send messages with their art. I bought a SIM card from a lady outside of the mall, hope that it will last the entire time in Columbia.
After walking Getsemani we stopped to eat a shrimp cocktail in an outside restaurant under a big tree. The wind was blowing and the branches shaded us from the sun. I enjoyed the cocktail while Carmen sat and wrote in her journal. We then walked to outside the wall to see the boats docked on the pier.
While walking back into the walled area we noticed a lady stationed under a tree selling lunch to the bus drivers and taxi drivers. Carmen and I agreed to share a meal. We had the best soup with white rice! It was called Sancocho. We ate on a little table made of a pallet box under a very thin tree.
We then walked into the San Pedro de Claver church museum which was established by a Jesuit priest. San Pedro was an advocate for the many African Slaves that were brought in to build the city. He was "El Apostol de los Negros". The Jesuits and Father Pedro developed a method, practices of liberation to dignify the enslaved. Teaching about equality and fraternity. It was a very beautiful sanctuary that gave us relief from the hot sun at the middle of the day. We sat in the gardens and marveled at the trees and how the wind was blowing into the garden. We imagined that in colonial times this is how the people survived the hot days in Cartagena. We watched videos prior to the trip and expected to have some vendors scamming or trying to get money from us. We did not experience that. Most of the vendors just stood with their items and if one said no they did not insist. The only bothersome ones were the young kids rapping songs with a hand held radio. They made up songs as they saw the tourists and followed them singing loudly. At one point they tried to approach us but before they started I looked at them and signaled NO. They did not bother coming to rap to us.