Travel

The Bogotá Pendulum

The Bogotá Pendulum

On my first full day in Bogotá, I took a wrong turn near the edge of one of the city's poorest neighborhoods, La Perseverancia, and was mugged at knifepoint. On my last full day in Bogotá, I had coffee with Colombia's former two-term president in his office. These two experiences—one with the very poor and the other with the very powerful—are the bookends of an exciting week in the Andean capital and serve as a metaphor for the fragmented personality of one of South America's richest lands.

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