|Juan Bautista hawks candies and smokes to bus drivers on Carrera 10.|
But, for folks with few skills and less education, it's a way to scrape by, whether they do it by hawking candy and smokes, washing car windows without being asked or beating bus tires with a stick.
Juan Bautista, who said he is nearing age 50, has been hawking candies and cigarettes to bus drivers on Carrera 10 for about the past seven years. He works from 5 a.m. until into the night, he said, but earns only 10,000 to 15,000 pesos per day - and has to pay 12,000 pesos per day for his room.
"Sometimes you don't earn enough," he said, "and so you have to ask the house manager to let you pay double the next night."
Despite his difficulties, Juan has a dream. He writes music, and has composed some 150 songs, mostly Colombian popular music. But he doesn't have the money to hire musicians to record his works to try to sell them to a music label. But he's still hoping.
|Angie does her best on a car window. |
But the driver left her empty-handed.
Nevertheless, Angie, who appeared to be high on some substance, told me that she can earn 20,000 to 30,000 pesos per day.
Have you noticed those young guys on busy avenues carrying sticks? At first I thot they were muggers. Later, I just wondered what they could be doing. They walk between lines of talled buses knocking on tires with those sticks. What they're doing, is making sure that none of the tires are flat or low on air.
|Knockin' on a tire.|
|Collecting a few coins payment.|
|This guy appeared to try, unsuccessfully, to pull open a car door.|
Finally, a bodybuilder does his thing in front of stopped cars near Parque Simon Bolivar. He has to hustle to perform and still have time to ask drivers for money.
By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours