Anyone that knows me also knows I’m incredibly afraid of snakes. Those nasty creatures scare the shit out of me.
So I was pleased when I heard how poisonous snakes were dealt with in Colombia.
The FARC isn’t a popular group in Colombia. The international media isn’t fond of them, either.
However, they certainly did Colombia a service in one regard.
The FARC lived in the jungles of Colombia for 2-3 decades. Living in the jungle, you run into many animals.
Wild animals and humans living in close vicinity isn’t always a winning combo. The FARC knew this.
So they killed any and every poisonous snake they came across for nearly three decades throughout the jungles of Colombia.
Currently, it’s incredibly rare to come across poisonous snakes in a majority of jungle areas in Colombia. The FARC nearly killed them all.
The Bus Jungle
I worked a basketball camp in Medellin a few years back. It’s one of the highlights of all my travels.
During the camp, I got to spend time with the former head coach of the Colombian national basketball team.
He happened to be fluent in English, too – which made him one of the four people I could communicate with at the camp.
Over lunch one day, he graciously began sharing some tales about living in Colombia.
In the late 90’s, violence was widespread in Colombia. The coach was taking one of his professional teams to a tournament in the north of Ecuador. As the team was based in Cali, Colombia – they were traveling by bus.
But they never made it to the tournament.
The FARC was robbing every bus and car on the highway that day. Police had no control over things in southern Colombia at the time.
A rebel jumped on the bus once it stopped. He was armed with an automatic weapon. He forced the bus to drive off the highway into the jungle.
Once the bus was about 3-4 miles into the jungle, he forced everyone off the bus, and more rebels confronted the team.
They stole everything. From shoes to watches to money. Then they let everyone go.
There was only one problem. The buses couldn’t reverse in the jungle. According to the coach, there are still around 100 buses abandoned in this jungle once controlled by the FARC.
As they can’t reverse in the jungle, there’s no way to get them out. And since it’s been almost 20 years, no one wants the buses, anyway.
Tales & Traveling in Colombia
Now, I have no way to confirm if these stories are true, but I don’t doubt they could be. You hear some weird stuff while traveling around Colombia.
Have you heard any crazy stories while traveling? Sound off in the comments if you have any wild tales.
Travel junkie turned blogger. Location independent. From the Midwest, but often based in Latin America. Big on beaches, rumba, and rum. Addicted to the gym. Committed to showing a different style of travel - one that involves actually interacting with locals and exploring different cultures.