1 Week in Bogota: Day 2 Zipaquira

Day 2 started off relatively similarly to Day 1. I woke up bright and early, did a series of ig stories about the picturesque views from my window, and enjoyed another hearty breakfast prepared by Lilia.
The plan was for me to follow L to work again and that's party the reason why I was up so early. I mean, I would've been up anyway because of my internal clock, but it was nice to have an actual reason.

Because I was on vacation, I had the luxury of having the time to slather my face in masks every morning and evening. I assume that this experience is 1% of what it might be like to be a Kardashian.
For breakfast, I had papaya and banana as well as an arepa, scrambled eggs with hot dogs, and a hot chocolate.
While we ate, Lupe was outside gnawing on a bone.
In town, L had her business to tend to, so I walked around making friends with more dogs, taking photos of the neighborhood joints, and ended up buying a snack from the old man who sells chicharron every day.
If you don't know, chicharron is basically deep fried pork skin. It's fried aggressively until the skin bubbles and crackles and becomes super crispy. And when you get it nice and fresh, it's still hot and it will have some pork still attached to it, which is divine.
I had a really crunchy bit of chicharron left that I was saving for a worthy pup. Turns out that Black was that pup! He's such a good boy and he cronched away on the treat happily.
For snack, Lilia had warmed up some empanadas. This was my first introduction to ahi (a hot pepper paste) which I fell in love with. I added huge dollops to my empanada which made L's cousin, J's eyes go wide.
I also tried my first cup of Colombian coffee after my empanada. It was already lightened and sweetened for me; it was pretty good. I'm not a coffee connoisseur so my opinion doesn't really mean much though.
After our snack, L's dad drove L, J, and I to Zipaquira so we could go to the Salt Cathedral. It was only a thirty-minute drive north of Tabio along some not-so-nice roads, some really nice and new highways, and back onto some less-developed roads.
Admission to this place was pretty steep. For me, a foreigner, it was $57.000 COP ($18 USD). I mean, not at all insane for my experiences across the globe, but just weirdly high for Colombia. If you're a resident, a resident senior, a resident student, you'll get a discount though so really, they're just gouging us tourists.
So this place is literally just a salt mine with crosses carved into it all over the place and they all represent the stations of the cross. It's rather religious and might not have been my cup of tea except the engineer in me was fascinated by the mine itself.
At the v. bottom (accessible by tourists, not the actual bottom of the mine), there's a series of gift shops and movie theaters and other random activities. We ended up watching one light show, which was really cool, and a movie that was meant to be 3D but was shown in 2D instead.
One of the souvenirs you can buy down there are literal emerald crumbs. Some were as tiny as grains of salt and I had no idea what anyone's intention would be in purchasing something like this.
I loved all of the eucalyptus trees everywhere in this area. They were so tall and elegant and gorgeous and of course they smelled amazing.
For lunch, we got a traditional type of meal called fritanga. Basically, they fry up loads of various meats and potatoes and plantains and you choose what you want and for how many people and the staff brings you a tray piled high. We ended up getting potatoes, platanos maduros (sweet plantains), chicharron, blood sausage, longanisa (a type of sausage), roasted pork, and we all got lemonades to wash it down. It was freakin' delicious. The sweet plantains were other worldly, the longanisa was so special, and just the experience of eating a meal like this was really cool. It just felt incredibly gluttonous and overindulgent in the best way possible.
On our drive back to Tabio, I spotted a bar with my name (almost) and J and I lost it. We were so tickled by it and I vow that the next time I'm in Colombia, I will come back and have a drink here.
When we got back, N, L's sister was already at home with her boyfriend. I hadn't seen her since Chile either so it was a sweet little reunion. And as if we hadn't all pigged out enough, we ended up at Cuchipanda, a famous bakery in Tabio, for dessert.
I tried pastel de gloria (the round puff pastries in the photo below which are filled with a guava paste) and had a bite of N and J's oblea, which is a wafer cookie sandwich. They'd opted to fill theirs with sweet cream and jam.
We did some major destruction at Cuchipanda.
And then again, as if we hadn't eaten enough, at N's request, we went shopping for some vegetables so I could teach everyone how to make summer rolls and drunken noodles. The meal ended up being a success - everyone seemed to enjoy it - and we all went to bed with full and happy tummies. Actually, J liked the summer rolls so much that a few days later, she made them to take to work for lunch.