Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Colombia, te extraño

Despite everything and trying to adopt a cliché living in the moment mentality, there can be no denying the fact that I miss Colombia. So bad.

I've already been plotting my return, looking up flights, calculating my finances, researching job opportunities and repeatedly looking through photos with a fond nostalgia. If my luck serves me right, I should hopefully be hopping on a plane back as early as next year but for now, I can at least look back on the great memories I have of this beautiful, crazy and unique country.

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Cabo de la Vela

The variety
Colombia is a beautiful country in so many ways (yes boys, the women are as beautiful as they say.) Colombia is home to beaches, rainforests, mountains, even weather akin to Britain's - looking at you Bogota. I have barely scratched the surface in what there is to explore in Colombia but this is a great motivation to go back!

Regional pride
I already touched up on this when I talked about why I loved Medellin so much but I love how Colombians are not only proud to be Colombian but they are also proud to be costeño, paisa, caleño, rolo etc. The regional identity comes with its own accent, vocabulary (I'm fairly fluent in paisa now), cuisine, music, history and adds to the interesting and unique Colombian identity.

The people
You may have already heard it but it's true: Colombians are a warm and friendly bunch. They are the life and soul of the party which means a lot of dancing (and probably a lot of aguardiente). The excuse of not knowing how to dance doesn't wash with Colombians so you will be pulled onto the dancefloor, willingly or not. This nicely leads me onto my next point...

Whilst I am not blessed with dancing feet, dancing whether it be salsa, merengue, cumbia, reggaeton (OK, maybe not so much) is still a nice way to socialise on a night out. The music is usually decent, even better so when it's a live performance and it's not a bad way to keep in shape!

Despite my struggles with the language barrier, I now miss speaking Spanish. Now I'm back at university, I find learning it in the classroom environment is artificial and does not suit me at all. Worse, I feel I'm regressing rather than improving my Spanish, although I can now sort of conjugate the imperfect subjunctive, word. The Colombian accent is music to my ears and I miss hearing it day in, day out - even if they're probably calling me a stupid gringa. Additionally, due to my voice that travels easily even when I don't intend it to, I inadvertently fit in as Colombians like to shout regardless of the situation. 

What did you appreciate about Colombia? Which country is the one you feel you will go back to again and again?

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