The Los Martires neighborhood, located a few blocks west of La Candelaria, is a run-down, hardscrabble area, but retains a sort of weathered charm. Once, perhaps close to a century ago, the residents were rich, and their stately homes remain, now converted into grain shops, hardware stores and welding shops.
The area should be a historical monument. On its plaza, the Spanish colonialists executed Colombian patriots. But today that same plaza is roamed by drug addicts from the nearby alley known as El Bronx.
|A salesman on a bike pedals down an unpaved street.|
|A house, once grand, now a hardware store.|
|Pedicabs delivering passengers.|
|The Iglesia del Voto Nacional, built after the Thousand Days War in gratitude for a peace which did not last.|
|Bar games for sale on a sidewalk. The silver objects are disks for playing tejo.|
|A homeless man searches thru a corner garbage pile. Such is Bogotá recycling.|
|Soldiers stand guard by the obelisk memorializing Colombia's martyrs.|
|By the plaza, a spontaneous flea market appears every day, offering products scrounged from the garbage or perhaps stolen.|
|Tools on the sidewalk.|
By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours