|Entrance to the Mercado de Egipto.|
The Egipto neighborhood's traditional market has operated for about as long as anybody can remember. It provides fresh, healthful fruits and vegetables, jobs for locals, income for campesinos and location for community events (such as this Sunday's mass for the Virgen del Carmen).
|A woman who has sold in the market for about|
40 years, as her mother did before her.
'I'm too old to move, she said.)
According to what I've heard second and third hand, Bogotá acueducto officials - the people who manage the city's water supply - are concerned about the stability of the market, which is built above the San Agustin River. Supposedly, the river is weakening the market's foundation. The officials' solution is to shut the market and send the vendors somewhere else.
|On Sundays the market becomes more active, and|
campesinos come from the countryside to sell chickens
and other things.
Egipto's vendors wonder what possible danger there can be, since the market is set on soil and the
river flows under its edge, apparently inside a pipeline (the huge amount of vegetation makes it impossible to see). If soil under the market were to shift, it seems to me that it would happen slowly, giving plenty of time to evacuate or take countermeasures.
|A cheese vendor.|
"I'm too old to move," a 56-year-old vegetable vendor, who has worked in the market since she was fourteen, as did her mother before her.
But city authorities don't seem very concerned.
|The San Agustin River's overgrown ravine behind the Mercado de Egipto. Note the probably illegally homes on the ravine's edge.|
|Years ago, the market was located on the corner in front of the church. The market was located due to road work. Today, perhaps it could move back.|
|A poster nearby headlines the market's original name, El Mercado de Rumichaca.|
|Cheese for sale.|
By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours