so, 2 days in cartagena was not what i expected. the first day, i went to a mud volcano- you can actually get into the mud bath there, which is possibly the weirdest feeling i've ever had. it's not at all like swimming when you're in a mud bath- pushing your hands down doesn't mean you can actually stay afloat- quite often that means you somehow push yourself forwards and face down into the mud- there's an art to not getting your face and head covered! but hey, it's supposed to be amazing for your skin etc. not sure i really felt that though, but it was definitely an experience. the second day i went with 2 girls i'd met at the hostel to the old town- or at least that was the plan. 20 metres down the street and my foot hit a smashed glass bottle and it was all over- jumped in a taxi, picked up my passport and some cash and headed to the local hospital to get 5 stitches over a bin. the hospital was really good though and all up it didn't cost as much as what i thought (about 150 AUS). consequently, i had a guy staying in my hostel dorm who was in his 4th year of med in the US, so he sorted me out with some bandages etc for the next part of my trip- no swimming though, which made me a spectator on the boat for san blas. i love hostels for the people you meet.