Stacked cloud piles, scale against which we judge the immensity of blue. Déjà vu homemade nativity scene in front of a church that looks like it’s going to fall over, roofpeak Mary smug between the outsized bell towers, we pedal some more through this town famous for its sausage. Then curlicues of scantly used farm roads between cultivated fields, pastures, sometimes plastic walled hothouses with neat columnar tomato vines. Surreal float through dragging moss trees, or then palms, or then desert scrub, or then to a river with beaches with Sunday revelers who’ve backed up their pickup trucks to unload coolers and grills. Stop, tour a vineyard ending holding the stemmed glassware with magenta distorting traces, grins as we put them down.
Circle back to Villa de Leyva, its immense plaza alive with the vitality of days between Christmas and the New Year pitch bent by the halo of a near full moon. Last night we huddled in the chill at the edges of a town futbol hard court, focused earnest four on four with miniature goals, M cheering. This evening bustle around a horse pulled elegant carriage, a groom on his mobile phone, the cheers of strangers, including us, as they ascend the stairs. Tomorrow, market day, we see it in the watermelon shine of sunset, rows of tropical fruit, winter vegetables, leaf greens, spices and beans, listen to the haggling, thread through groups of men who have called it a day to the beer tents, wading all while through husks pulpy crush empty cardboard boxes.
Margaret mentions that we’re hearing right now the sound that we’ve heard most often in the towns of Colombia. Laughter.