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Bicycles, Cartagena, Colombia

Railing, Cartagena, Colombia

Nuestra Señora, Cartageana

Cartagena, Colombia

Booksellers, Cartagena, Colombia

Botero, Cartagena, Colombia

Siete de Agosto, Bogotá

7 de Agosto, Bogotá

Siete de Agosto, Bogotá

7 de Agosto, Bogotá

Siete de Agosto, Bogotá

Siete de Agosto, Bogotá

 

Siete de Agosto, Bogotá

The Siete de agosto neighborhood in Bogotá has its main shopping drag along Avenida Carrera 24 in the upper 60 blocks. Central to the barrio is the bustling Plaza de mercado 7 de agosto, the flower, fruit, meat, vegetable and artesanía market at Calle 66 # 23-30. I go to this market for many reasons, among them R 12 potatoes (not available in Carulla), freshly shucked peas, calendula flowers and handmade ceramic flowerpots. This past weekend I found wonderful red painted artesanía Pinocchio pull figures for 10,000 pesos (about $3) each.

Vendors lined up along Carrera 24 selling farolitos and candles for the upcoming December 7th night of velitas, one of Bogotá’s very special and traditional nights of the year. On the evening and night of December 7th, and officially introducing the upcoming Christmas celebrations, restaurants, stores and just plain ole folks line up small candles on the sidewalks outside their businesses or residences.

The Siete de agosto district radiates out from the Plaza de mercado onto neighboring streets in a wonderful jumble of stores selling paper products (green or red festive shopping bags for the season’s gifts?), kitchenware (enamel plates?), baskets, hand hewn wooden spoons ……. the list goes on.

Spending time in Siete de agosto is a super way, for a couple of hours on a Saturday afternoon, to get to know what makes Bogotá Bogotá.

Siete de Agosto, Bogotá

Siete de agosto, Bogotá

Siete de agosto, Bogotá

Bird cages, Siete de agosto, Bogotá

Siete de agosto, Bogotá

 

This is from my book, 40 Bogotá. Enjoy!  Our Piedra Bogotana is special.

Piedra Bogotana, Bogotá

Bogotá Stone/ Piedra Bogotana

Your first impression of Bogotá may be surprise that it is a city of brick. Most of us don’t come to a major South American city thinking that we are going to find a use of brick equal to London’s. But Bogotá loves its brick.

Piedra Muñeca, Bogotá

You will gradually become aware, however, that Bogotá is in fact as much defined by its native limestone, locally called Piedra Bogotana or Piedra Muñeca, as it is by its multi-colored brick. Most of Bogotá’s iconic buildings are clad in Piedra Bogotana. As you wander about the city, you will find that the Cathedral, the Congress Building, the Héroes Monument and pretty much any other representative Bogotá building is outfitted in Piedra Bogotana. Piedra Bogotana is so prevalent that many Bogotanos take it for granted, oblivious to the daily richness that surrounds them.

Piedra Bogotana, La Macarena, Bogotá

For you, the visitor, it’s fun as you go about town to note the layered definitions of time with which Piedra Bogotana endows the city.

Piedra Bogotana, Bogotá


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