7 December 2009

Little monkeys of Colombia don't have rabies

More from the Carribean coast of Colombia. This is Moñitos ("little monkeys") - a very small town where everyone knows each other and zooms around the dirt roads on motorbikes. My very good friend, Kevin, suggested I go there to discover a rarely visited part of Colombia.

There are no tourists in this place. In fact, there is only one other foreigner there: Frtiz, from Switzerland. Seeing that I was a foreigner, everyone kept telling me, "There´s a Swiss guy who lives here." I eventually met him on the street - it's a very small town - as he was the only person besides me who didn't look Colombian.

We approached each other and I said, "You must be Fritz, from Switzerland. You've been living here from 8 years and you have a little son."
"You must be the Australian photographer," he replied.
The people don't really do very much in Moñitos, as a result they gossip and talk about everyone else's business. They had all seen me with my camera and hence word got around that I was an Australian photographer. Small town phenomenon!

[Above and below] The main road

[Below] Everybody gets around on motorbike. I even saw an 11-year-old girl in school uniform driving her little brother home on the back of a motorbike. It looked a little strange as the bike was bigger than the both of them.

[Below] The continuation of the main road. Actually, there only are three roads in Moñitos.

[Below] Like in many small, South American towns, Moñitos has a number of street dogs. They are all very friendly but one came up to me and licked my knee while I was taking a photo. Usually this wouldn't bother me except that I had an open cut on my knee and rabies is easily transmissible through infected saliva. I popped into the hospital across the street from my hostal to ask for some advice from the doctor.
"There's no rabies here," he said. "But there is a lot of malaria."
I wasn't worried about malaria so I was happy.

[Below] The beach. The water was absolutely spectacular... in temperature rather than in color. But unfortunately a lot washes up onto the beach in the mornings. Here are some children scavenging for items of somewhat use or value. The people of Moñitos are very poor.

[Below] But they are so friendly!

[Below] Children enjoying simple pleasures

[Below] Chillin'

[Below] Like the speechless man in Paso Nuevo, this man also did not speak. Once again my impression was that it was due to a lack of education rather than physical inability.

[Below] This boy was constantly happy. Afterwards I sat down and chatted with him and his schoolfriends about life in the village.

(Apologies to the email subscribers who received this post incompleted a short while ago. I'm using a friend's tiny netbook computer with an even smaller keyboard, and I somehow managed to press Publish before I was even near ready.)

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Relaed Posts

- Paso Nuevo, Colombia
- Little witches in Colombia
- Super Agui = Super Water?


  1. Sweet man! As always it is awesome seeing the journey unfold little by little. Thanks for the shout-out :)

    Un abrazote hermano!

  2. It's funny how no matter where in the world you are, most small towns are all the same!

  3. Wow, that's a lot of motorbikes. I've seen other small towns/villages like this, where everything is withing walking distance yet people prefer to use bikes of motorbikes. What's wrong with walking?

  4. Yeah, everything in the town is certainly within walking distance but the town itself is a bit isolated. You would need some kind of motorised transport to get from one town to the next. There are buses that pass a few times a day to different locations, but I think a lot of people use the service of the motorbike taxis.
    Though I should also point out that yes, many people also use the motorbikes as taxis around town, even though they could really walk. There's nothing wrong with walking at all. :)


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