noviembre 29, 2020

The Big Metropolis and its magic

botero museum interior garden

Bogota is a city that may interest different kinds of tourists: the lover of nature, the one among history, the who wich in its vicinity seeks for medicinal waters, and also the easy observer … and also the dreamer. What happens is that there are things that don’t seem to be said about this city (fortunately, much is now being said about the network of bike paths and much less about the network of public libraries, a number of them are splendid architectural constructions).
But some things don’t seem to be talked about. Few people know, for instance, that foreign photographers are attracted by the attractive pink light shown by the eastern hills of the town, particularly within the bright month of August. neither is it customary to speak about the spiritual peace that the visit to the arboretum «José Celestino Mutis» or the statesman commons can give within the latter, the visitor can find not only a lake and a splendid view of Monserrate and Guadalupe, but also find very typical birds like the little ¨copetón¨ (sparrow) – of lovely chirping and striking brown stripes on the black back – or the blackbirds, or plants also very characteristic as elderberry, willows, capers, magnolias, or ¨carbonero¨ trees.

The history of Bogotá (Bacatá, within the language of the Muiscas) could also be a touch more known, but it’s worth remembering it, underlining the multiethnic and multicultural nature of Colombia. The capital city keeps in its vicinity vestiges of the primitives that occupied Colombia about 12 thousand years ago, as is obvious to people who visit the Piedras del Tunjo, in Facatativá, a town located 36 kilometers south-west from Bogotá and whose name is Muisca – indigenous people who found the Spaniards once they arrived – it means «Strong enclosure at the highest of the plain». As you will be ready to see, the name in Spanish has an indigenous meaning, and also the miscegenation – linguistic, therein and many of other names – can even be seen within the faces of the people of Bogotá. Monserrate and Guadalupe are linked to both the Muisca past, the Spanish conquest and also the Spanish colony. Monserrate and Guadalupe were, for the Muisca, a sacred site of sun worship. Upon their arrival the Spaniards found that «idols covered with gold shone within the heights», says Elisa Mujica. within the foothills of these two hills, the town of the Spanish conquest, the colony and also the primary years of republican life originated. Perhaps variety of these that walk sympathetically the streets of the colonial district of los angeles Candelaria can expect to figure out, rather like the national poet José Asunción Silva, leaning on the balcony of 1 of these houses «the severe head / of some oídor, or the dark eyes / of a Spanish lady / of pearly complexion and red lips «, coming from Andalucia.

old colonial house bogota

Bogotá, The big metropolis ….. and its magic

«August in the capital is an emblematic month: the clarity of the air and a beautiful pink light attract foreign photographers in front of the tutelary hills. It is also the most joyful month, which clouds the air of colors «.
Jaime Jaramillo Escobar (X-504)

Virgilio Barco library

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