Monday, August 17, 2015

Metro and Gondola in Medellin

This is Mike...
Today, the four of us went on the Metro from Poblado station to Acevedo station where we exited to take the gondolas up the mountain.   There were a few things that stood out on this journey. First, the people were extremely friendly and smiled a lot. Secondly, the passengers were courteous to the elderly or new moms with infants and politely got up to allow the more needy to enjoy a seat. Thirdly, there wasn't any graffiti or gang banger attire of any kind and as such we never once felt unsafe. Beyond that we were treated like special house guests by everyone today. The Colombians wanted to take pictures with us, have their infants kiss Sierra on the cheek or just share in a moment of laughter. I know that most of my friends in the U.S. think this is crazy talk but I can assure you this is 100% real Colombian hospitality. For starters some people commented that el Poblado is the "Upper end" and that our view would be skewed because of it. I would respond to that by saying, we were on the Metro and that anyone and everyone can sit next to you. The Metro ride was a random slice of happy people doing happy things. It kind of reminded me of the way the U.S. used to be before the internet mentality took over and where people lived by interacting with each other instead of living virtual lives. Colombia has been an absolute surprise from top to bottom and a very refreshing experience in this hectic modern world.

On a holiday there is very little traffic on the road which we find great that families are together for these special breaks.
The train station was clean and well organized with helpful employees to assist the gringos from Texas whom are not used to the mass transit system norms. 
Happy travelers of the Metro started out by sitting down then got up, like the other Colombians, to allow the less able to sit. I was proud of my family for doing the right thing for the less able.
The suburbs sprawl up the side of the mountain and could give San Francisco a run for the money on steep roads.
Clean and efficient train stations and, believe it or not, the security allowed pictures in the terminal without a TSA type jerk off saying taking of pictures in stations is prohibited.
The modern terminal, halfway up the hill, among the red bricked buildings in the barrio.
The protected forest at the top of the mountain provides a respite for people trying to escape the hustle and bustle of the city below.
Sierra was ready to make corn meal old school style.
Notice the lady hands making the "Handmade" candy. We love this kind of stuff, we just love it.
A vendor selling liquid drinks of all sorts.
A smooth "Enlivening" tea of coca leaves aids in sensory awareness and alertness atop the mountain.
The cool Willy is the dispenser of fine beverages.
Our girls getting kisses from some beautiful and very friendly Colombian college girls, which I thought was awesome.
The megalopolis seen from the gondolas high above.
We disembarked, in a poor barrio, half way down the hill and saw people shopping and strolling just like anyone from any other class would do. We are simply too similar to be different.
The river below marks the bottom of the valley and the homes rise to the mountain top.
A view from the Poblado train station to the mountains above where we are staying.
Two signs made with 100% all organic materials like flowers, grasses, and twine.

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