After touring the streets of the Historical Center and discovering the unimaginable legends of Cartagena de Indias, I decide to rest on a bench in the Parque Simón Bolívar, diagonal to the Cathedral.
This park is emblematic in the city. It has a varied tree planting that covers the whole place with a green blanket of shade, as well as being accompanied by a refreshing breeze. I sit down and take out the book One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel García Márquez, to finish his famous pages, while the wings of several birds flit without stopping in the heart of the plaza. In some way, the combination of reading with what you experience is an electrifying sensation that transports you to a colonial era.
I raise my head and cautiously observe the crafts
, raspao 'carts, vendors of fresh lemonade, paintings of the park made in oil, and the giant sculpture of the liberator Simón Bolívar riding in his horse and resting in the middle of the plaza, before the attentive look of tourists and locals. In one of the corners, is also sitting, on a small stool, an old man polishing the shoes of anyone who is interested in wearing shiny shoes.
I close my book and observe that the Parque Simón Bolívar is surrounded by museums
, libraries and boutiques. I also perceive that this place is one of the main arteries of the Historical Center, due to the high traffic of people. In addition, it is the ideal space to make our couple fall in love with us on one of those romantic evenings in the city, while a guitar soloist helps us in the task of conquest with its wide repertoire of boleros from the 60's.
The horse-carriages drivers
are also seen in the area, offering the service for all of those interested in discovering the beauty of the Corralito de Piedra mounted on a strong steed. Out of nowhere, a lady offers me bags of corn to feed the pigeons.
At 40 minutes a dance group arrives to excite young people, adults, foreigners and curious people who are visiting the sector. I concentrate on the steps of mapalé, cumbia and champeta to replicate them at a party. The drum beat vibrates throughout my body and makes me enjoy from beginning to end this display of art offered by Cartagena’s people.
When the music goes out the sun hides, indicating that the night is approaching to enjoy it fully. I leave the Parque Simón Bolívar, but I decide to take a picture with a palenquera posing next to me as proof of the excellent experience I had. Now, I return to the hotel with an ice cream to prepare myself to live a unique night in Cartagena de Indias.