Alex and I share a cubicle area in the Colombia Ministry of Finance with Celina who works with the Risk Management group. Celina speaks good English and when we have a break we like to chat. One day she mentioned she was going to Helsinki, Finland. Why? I asked. To compete in the Underwater Rugby world championships she replied. That got my attention. So I asked the obvious question "what is Underwater Rugby?" This slight and slim 27 year old (about the size of my sister-in-law Carol) has to be an excellent swimmer and have a lot of stamina to compete in this unusual and demanding sport. The team members work in pairs as a tag team so they can get a break. Since the team is not supported by the government I bought a shirt to help the team finance their trip to Helsinki. Every day I learn something new.
On Sunday Jorge and his family (wife and two daughters) along with Carlos (who is from Cali and just came to Bogotá where most of the computer work is) picked me up at the hotel and we drove up along the circunvalar (a winding road cut into the side of the mountain) to the cable car the goes up to Monserrate. On top of the mountain overlooking Bogotá is a Church built before they had cable cars and power equipment. It is a breathtaking experience. First because of the spectacular view of Bogotá. Second because everything up there is steps and paths climbing up and down at some 10,350 feet of elevation (remember I am a sea level guy from Chicago). Later Jorge admitted it had been 10 years since he last was up here. Although it is cool, because of the alternating sunshine and rain, the mountain is a lush green and refreshing as you look out across the vast concrete city below.