The journey sometimes is better than the destination. My husband and I set out on a Sunday morning from the tourist spot of Villa de Leyva for one of Colombia’s big attractions, the salt cathedral at Zipaquirá. Luckily for us, we missed the direct bus connection between the two cities. Instead, we got a taxi… Read More Black-and-White Cows, Green Fields and a Salt Cathedral: Sáchica to Zipquirá, Colombia. November 2009.
It’s hard to tell from this photo, but the guy in the green shirt and cowboy hat is holding a puppy. He’s having a long chatty talk on a Sunday morning with the two young helmeted policemen on the minibike. I saw this friendly encounter in downtown Villa de Leyva. This quaint colonial city is… Read More Police and Tourists in the Street (Oh Yeah): Villa de Leyva, Colombia. November 2009.
Once I saw the landscape around Barichara, I wished we had time to do the hike that descends to the nearby village of Guane. The streets of Barichara slope upward, with a beautiful little park with palms and cactus at the top of the town. From this park, you can look into a tranquil green… Read More The Hike Not Taken: Barichara, Colombia. November 2009
My husband David and I had a lot to be grateful for when we woke up on the top floor of the building shown here. It’s kind of a supersized wooden hut. Backpackers can rent hammocks on the first floor, while there are two private rooms, or cabanas up top. David and I got one… Read More Thanksgiving at a Glorious Beach : Parque Nacional Tayrona, Colombia. November 2009.
One of the grandest hotels in Cartagena boasts some very colorful permanent guests, toucans. There are at least three of them at the Sofitel Santa Clara, which is a converted17th century convent. The toucans perch on wicker chairs around the main patio, and play with the guests at breakfast. In their travels around the Santa… Read More Creole Highlight, Crippling Heat : Cartagena, Colombia. November 2009.
It’s a bit of museum lore that reads like a novel, and not a very believable one. A Dutch woman living in the 1600s does something extraordinary and learns to paint. She becomes one of only two female members allowed into the painters’ guild in her native Haarlem. To mark her works, she devises an… Read More Guiding Star, Lost and Found : Judith Leyster Show at the National Gallery, Washington. September 2009.
For more than two hundred years, the fruit in these two paintings has been ready to roll. It would take only the slightest tap to drop that orange from the table to the right. To the left, a single blow-out-the-candles breath would get that pear in motion. While the artist surely didn’t intend this, the… Read More Poised Near the Edge : Still Life Paintings of Luis Meléndez. Washington, August, 2009.