I don't always understand what makes a city tick.
I’ll visit a popular spot and I just don’t get it – I pick up no vibes, I see little culture and I barely scratch the surface. It’s not that there is nothing worthy to do, but rather that I just don’t see the point to it. It may be my fault for not being in the right frame of mind – not ready to welcome a new destination when I’m still thinking about the previous one, or that my time there is too short to do more than scratch the surface.
But that’s okay isn’t it? It’s challenging to break barriers and befriend locals, to get the hang of why a town is the way it is. Barichara, the prettiest town in Colombia was a little like that for me. But while Insta-worthy and lovely, this white walled, whimsical colonial style town was little more than its outward image. Nobody walked the streets, half the restaurants were closed, and we left just a couple of hours after arriving, to return to the nearby and much livelier town of San Gil.
Much later, (a couple of years, in fact), I can’t help but look back on my time in Barichara as a waste. Surely I missed something, I didn’t try hard enough to ‘get’ the town or I gave up too soon, persuaded by a bored boyfriend and a scorching heat not soothed by ice-cream. But a swift search of google suggests my initial thoughts were correct – Barichara is nothing more than a pretty tourist façade.
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