It was a rainy Sunday afternoon in Barranquilla and instead of going for a walk, Yoyi suggested going to el rio. I knew he meant the Magdalena River, which is a border of Barranquilla. I had crossed it on the bus to Santa Marta, but I hadn’t really been there before.
Barranquilla is not a city for tourists, and because of this there is a lack of information for things for tourists to do here. In the unlikely chance that you ever find yourself as a tourist in Barranquilla, Bocas de Ceniza is good place to go.
When we got near the river it didn’t seem like we were in Barranquilla anymore, but more like a small town on a river in Colombia. Unlike the overly cementified Barranquilla, the road next to the river and train track was a dirt road, and there was even grass. In the river there were boats and barges.
We got to the Bocas de Ceniza trencito (the suffix –ito or –ita in Spanish makes things diminutive. This is very common to Spanish language in every Spanish speaking country I’ve been, but here they seem to do it more than anywhere else. Everything gets put in the diminutive for no real reason.) El trencito really was a trencito, it wasn’t a really a train, but it did run on a track.
Look at el trencito
Look at the engine
We waited for the train before to come back. We saw it coming and apparently it needed to be moved from the rusty track. The way this was done was that one guy lifted the front part off the track, then he and another guy pushed it. I thought this was hilarious Colombian engineering, but even Yoyi was laughing.
|"Let's just lift this train off the track and push it over there."|
|Train vs. taxi|
|Where the river meets the sea: El caribe on the left rio Magdalena on the right|
el trencito got to what was almost the end of its rusty track, we were able to get out and walk down towards the end of the land.
|Where the track had rusted away|
There is just something about the little baby tweet tweet tweet of chicks that is so cute.
Sol y Mar, the dog that wanted to get on the train and ride with us, and guys playing dominoes.
|This guy wanted to get on the train with us|
|Yes, the motorcycle on the train|
|Yoyi and me on the train|
|Notice the train behind us pushing us, and the guy on the motorcycle|
|The view of Barranquilla in the distance|
|Junior restaurant, notice the parrot, it's real|
|Where we had a dinner of amazing size|
We ended up going into an enormous seafood restaurant on the river. The portion was as proportionally large as the restaurant, we split a robalo a la plancha and were full. The aguacero (storm) happened while we were eating, so when we walked out the dirt streets were now muddy rivers. We rode in the second mode of transport that I had never been on in Barranquilla, the bicycle taxi. It was kind of necessary, because otherwise I think I’d have lost a flip-flop in the street that had become a river.
Speaking of this, it sounds just like the aforementioned arroyo. I didn’t actually see what a real arroyo, but I did see flooded streets and other parts of Barranquilla that I’d never seen before. It was dark, and even if we had passed an arroyo, I don’t think a picture would have turned out. Yoyi knows where one is, so next time I’m home during the day and it rains, I’ll find one.
If you are wondering Bocas de Ceniza, means ash mouth. I can understand the mouth part, like mouth of a river, but the ash part was a mystery to me. Ah, but good old Wikipedia en español solved it. It gets its name from the color of the water from where the ash-grey polluted river water meets the sea.
If you'd like to read more about it, albeit in Spanish: