1986 Venezuela Our Last Stop 4/4
We left Lima for Caracas, Venezuela. The plane made a stop in Bogotá BOG, Columbia El Dorado International one of the busiest airports in the world. Another high plateau with more samples of coffee. It’s really popular and all the countries compete with each other. I’m sorry but Columbia beats Brazil hands down. Katie remembered the beautiful emeralds they had for sale there. We would visit Cartagena on another trip.
Caracas CCS only 15 miles from the coast sits at the top of a high cliff. Fifteen miles at an altitude of 2200m It seems like the drive from the airport is straight up. We are back on the Atlantic side now. We are visiting Belgian friends who had transferred from Cincinnati. Jean-Pierre was with Procter & Gamble. They had a new baby. The baby’s name was Lucie. At 18 mos she was just learning to talk, French. She was a Belgian baby being raised in Venezuela. All she could say was qui, qui, qui or who? She is very cute. We stayed with them at their apartment. It was very nice. It was a high-rise. It is hot in Caracas.
Jean-Pierre had to work but on the weekend he took us to the German colony of Colonia Tovar. The original settlers from the Black forest in 1843. The efficient Germans were quickly isolated and kicked out of town to form their own colony by the people of Caracas. One day Dominique drove us to visit the faculty of chemistry at Ciudad University. The Capitolio is a small gold domed building downtown.
Well, the most important thing to know about Caracas is that it is the birthplace of the great liberator, Simon Bolivar, the George Washington of South America. He was raised in Caracas by his nursemaid Hipolita. During the Napoleonic Wars Spain was occupied by France. One by one, Bolivar picked off the Latin American colonies winning them independence. In sixth grade I wrote an oil company pamphlet asking people to come to work in Caracas.
Jean-Pierre is an excellent host. He gave us some gifts. Locally grown cocoa. two bottles of Polar, a local beer and a small reed bow and arrow. Use by the natives to shoot and poison frogs. He also gave me samples of the local coins and currency.