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Images from my Cartagena apartment

Summertiiiiime… And the livin’ is easy…

After a good night’s sleep in the hotel, I was able to get a cab back to the plaza for just $3. I was right — negotiating the cab fare BEFORE you get in an unmetered cab is essential, worldwide. (update: I later got comfortable with just handing the driver a 10,000 peso note and waiting for my change. That’s what they’re used to and I rarely got overcharged that way).

With just a little help from Oliver, a street vendor of paintings (and some better info from my hostess) I found the apartment. Let me tell you, it was worth waiting for! Just two doors down from the plaza where I had my beer and lunch yesterday, the location is perfect and gorgeous. Here’s what the common areas of the apartment building look like:

And here’s the interior of my apartment:

So, now that I’m here, what do I do? Umm.. whatever I want, mostly I am working a lot of hours to pay the bills, but they are the hours I choose, and without television or friends, I seem to have a lot of free time to fill.

I wake up whenever I please (usually between 8am and 11am). I make coffee & check e-mail, facebook, etc. After that I fill my day with writing articles, reading, walking, exploring, cooking, eating out, talking on the phone with my son, Facebook, meeting the neighbors. I do yoga (as much as possible on a tile floor with no mat), listen to music and dance. I also wash dishes, do small loads of laundry in the sink, and tidy up.

I work in the apartment when it’s hot, or on the veranda when it’s cooler. At night, I read and Skype with Craig.   When it’s not too hot, I open the tall windows so I can hear and see all the hubbub on the street below. I regularly hear the clip-clop of horse-drawn carriages, a vendor who comes through with saxophones and plays a couple of riffs, and lots of people calling out, whistling, etc.

Here are some pics of the street, taken from my window:

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