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Mar. 3, 2024

During my first journey through South America I visited 36 towns/cities in Ecuador. In Perú, I visited 38; in Chile, only five; and in Argentina, I visited 16. In Uruguay, I visited five, and in Brazil, three. And in Paraguay I have visited 26. In Colombia I've visited 83. That's 212 towns/cities in South America.

I have now started my second backpacking journey of South America.

I'm in Jamundí, Colombia.

Cali, Colombia



Cali, or more correctly Santiago de Cali, is a city of more than two million people. By the land area of the city it is the second biggest city in Colombia, but by the population it is the third biggest. Cali was founded in July of 1536, that makes Cali 488 years old. The first church built here, in 1538, is still standing and in use. Next to and attached to the church is the a house that is now used as an archeological museum. There are photos in the photo album.

Clouds - A conversation with Gemini AI


I saw a meme on Threads about the weight of clouds. I've never seen anything about the weight of clouds before so this piqued my curiosity. I went to the Gemini AI and asked about this -

-Do scientists know the weight of clouds? If they do, how?

Yes, scientists have a good understanding of how much clouds weigh, though the exact weight can vary depending on several factors. Here's how they estimate it:

My upcoming second journey of South America


I am heading out for my second backpacking journey of South America on March 2. My plan is to spend a couple of months visiting many pueblos in Ecuador, then the same in Perú, then a month in Chile, a month in Argentina, and finally end in Paraguay. At this moment, I haven't made a final decision of where I will live. There are a couple of towns I like - Moyobamba (Northern Perú), Arequipa (Southern Perú), Formosa (Northeastern Argentina border with Paraguay), Encarnación (Southern Paraguay border with Argentina). Moyobamba is the smallest with a population of around 55,000; Arequipa has a pop. just under a million in the metropolitan area; Formosa is at about a half-million; Encarnació has about 100,000. Those numbers are very general as the websites with population data have numbers all over the map for all of those cities. Arequipa is definately bigger than my preference but I have visited that city two times and I really like it. The others are all in the size range that I prefer.

Argelia, Valle del Cauca, Colombia



Argelia, Valle del Cauca, Colombia, has a population of about 6500, and about 3500 live in the urban center of the town. The town is located in the western range of the Andes Mountains and has a river running through a very narrow valley. The town is built on the slopes of the mountains. The only flat, horizontal streets are the few that run along the sides of the mountain. To connect those there are a couple of switchbacks at one end and a road that drops down to the river. Other than those ends, in between are five stairways connecting the streets, and they are steep and long. The town has a central plaza with a church on one side and bars and discos on three sides. There are two actual proper sit-down restaurants and many small fast-food-type restaurants.

Tuluá, Colombia



Tuluá, Colombia, has a population of about 220,000. The town sits in the center of the Valle del Cauca department between the Central and Western ranges of the Andes Mountains. The name Tuluá came from the Tulué indigenous people who spoke the Pijao language. The Pijao language went extinct in the 18th century, so nobody knows the meaning of the word Tuluá. So, because the Pijao people referred to the land as "easy to navigate" the city adopted that as the meaning of the word Tuluá. Also, due to its geographical location in the center of the department Valle del Cauca, Tuluá is also known as the Heart of the Valley.