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It’s My Birthday!

It's My Birthday!
Cartagena, Colombia

Cartagena, Colombia


I can’t imagine there are many more beautiful places to spend a birthday than Cartagena!

After getting a very restful night’s sleep, we went downstairs for another lovely breakfast before heading up to the rooftop deck for a day of lounging and sunbathing. We had both gotten pretty sunburned in Barranquilla, despite being in the shaded palco for most of the day, so we decided to take it easy, sun-wise, and to just enjoy being in our beautiful surroundings. I ventured into the sun for short periods, but Matthew stayed in the shade of an umbrella all day. Little did we know the umbrellas do a great job of shielding you from the heat of the direct sun but NOTHING to shield you from its burning rays! Matthew got cooked! Good sport that he is, though, he didn’t complain and went about planning a beautiful dinner in the Old City to celebrate my special day.

We did take a short break for lunch and decided to eat at the hotel buffet. The food was really good, especially the desserts!

While we were still at the pool, though, Matthew got an email from Lorena (the hotel concierge) letting him know that she had had a treat delivered to our room. We went downstairs to find a lovely vase of flowers and a delicious birthday dessert – coconut cake with dulce de leche – so yummy and what a nice surprise!

After a little more sun time, we showered and took an Uber into town for dinner. We ate at Alma, the courtyard restaurant inside the Hotel Casa San Agustin. We were seated at a gorgeous table overlooking the fountain and hanging gardens. Our meal started with a cocktail for me and some cold sparkling water for Matthew. Then we shared a giant lobster ceviche appetizer before ordering our main course. I decided on another appetizer – a charcuterie plate made up of various jamon and manchego cheese – while Matthew ordered a beautiful lamb dish. For dessert, our waiter brought out a chocolate lava cake with lit candles and sang “Happy Birthday” to me with his lilting Cartagenan accent. What a perfect night! The weather was once again spectacular as we enjoyed our meal then returned to our hotel for the night.

The taxi ride back to our hotel was one of the scariest things ever! The driver was weaving in and out of traffic, crossing the double yellow lines, and speeding like crazy. I don’t think I’ve ever been so terrified in a car, even when teaching my kids how to drive! We vowed to stick to Uber from that point forward.


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