Friday, March 13, 2009

Poker in Santa Fe

The town of Santa Fe de Antioquia, about an hour west of Medellín, was founded in 1541, and was this region's first capital (until Medellín took the title in the 1800s). Today it's a sleepy agricultural town of 22,000, noted for its colonial streets and hot weather because of its low elevation in a river valley. In the weekend, day trippers from Medellín come to the area's many swimming pools and water parks. But on the Thursday I visited, the action was in the town's main square.

Crowds of locals gathered around several heated poker matches. The players slammed their hands on the ground at the end of each round. The crowd murmured as 10,000 peso ($4) bills were won and lost. They told me that the silver-haired man was the undisputed poker champion of the town.

I noticed another man standing on the edge of the poker circle holding a live pigeon.

He had just found the pigeon suffering from a broken wing, and told me that he was going to set its wing and take care of it until it was healthy again.

Tomorrow a post of the streets of Santa Fe.


Michael J. Madsen March 14, 2009 at 8:54 AM  

Great stuff. I like the poker champ shot with the happy guy in the background. And the compassion on the pigeon guys face.

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