Archive | August, 2010

Old Town, New Realizations

31 Aug

So I while I was back in my beautiful, dirty, chaotic Barranquilla, which I love very,very much, I went through many different moods, went out to eat about million times, hung out with old friends, made new ones, discovered family secrets among other things and as usual in my life, I found myself in various and very, uh, “colorful” situations.  And by colorful I mean odd and frustrating.  So here is a summary of some of my adventures in my hometown also known as Quillatown, Quiyork, Quilla city or whatever other ridiculous name some people insist on calling it. Whatever!

First of all, it felt so weird to realize I was on vacation in my own city. I guess that’s when it really hit me that I have established permanent residence in a foreign country. That was the moment when I thought, “Toto, We’re not in Kansas anymore!”  Naturally, I started making comparisons as soon as I got off the airplane and made the mistake of sharing my thoughts out loud to those around me. A few days later, they told me to shut up.

As we got to our house, I found a lot of people there waiting for me, which I was not expecting at all. At that point I was so tired that all I really wanted to do was sleep. So I found myself annoyed and angry. And I had only been in Barranquilla for a few hours. After a good night of sleep though, I felt so much better.

Oh, how I enjoyed my sleep in Barranquilla. You have no idea how deep I slept while I was there.  I hadn’t slept that well in so, so long.  I guess that’s one of the things that I miss the most about being in Colombia because as soon as I got back to the US, I started having insomnia again.

It was a miracle that I didn’t gain weight while I was in Barranquilla because I seriously ate like there was no tomorrow. Surprisingly, I actually lost a few pounds. I am not going to make a list of all the delicious things I ate. I am just going to show you this, this and this. And this. I didn’t take pictures of everything I ate because sometimes the outings were impromptu dinner/lunch dates and I was not always carrying my camera with me.

One day, I took my mom out for ice cream and we started talking about my grandmother and her mother. I told her that while I was in Miami visiting relatives I’d heard some rumors about a family secret which supposedly no one knew about. After my exhaustive interrogation, my mom had no choice but to tell me the whole story. And wow! What a story it was! And as I said before, it is a very serious business and no one can know anything about it. Besides I decided that I am going to write a book about the story of my family, which by the way is so much bigger than I thought. So I obviously cannot reveal said family secret. I guess ya’ll will just have to wait till my book gets published and I’m rich and famous. Ha!

Another thing I discovered is that I can be so naïve and trusting at times, it is just pitiful. And most importantly and in case I had ever any doubt about it, I was reassured that some men are just selfish jerks that play with women’s feelings. Some men are nothing but stupid cowards that use lame excuses to cover their weakness. But I guess this is nothing new. It is just that we trust so blindly sometimes, we ignore that inner voice that tells us to be careful.  So women, beware.

Okay, I feel better now that I got that off my chest. I didn’t mean to sound like a raging feminist because I’m not one. Some women can be pretty nasty bitches too. That was another one of the things I discovered too.

And finally and because I can’t live without lists, here is a quick one of my observations and/or comparisons during my stay in my old town.

  • People in Barranquilla drive like animals! I sincerely congratulate drivers in the US for being so respectful of traffic rules!
  • Chicken in the US is just gross. It is so bland and when you boil it, this weird foam forms on the surface, it makes me wonder if I should be eating it after all. Pork tastes better here and beef is alright. But chicken is utterly disgusting.
  • Shopping Malls might be bigger in the US but they are not as pretty as our Buenavista 2
  • This is totally vain, but my hair is so much softer in Colombia. I guess there’s something in the water here in NC that makes my hair look dull and frizzy.
  • I had a rash on my arms while I was in the US. It disappeared in Quilla. And two days after arriving in Miami, I broke out again. I have no idea what causes it.
  • My stomach doesn’t make funny noises when I am Colombia.
  • I am much more clumsy in american territory. I am covered in bruises after being here for less than a month.
  • There is much more variety of fruit and vegetables in the United States. Also, the way they display veggies at the supermarkets here makes them more appealing. In Colombia, they still had dirt all over them. Boo!
  • Although I love the city because I have things like the movies away at a walking distance, I also like the fact that I live surrounded by so many trees and green areas. So I miss the city but I’m also slowly learning to love the country.
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Oh, Life, you suck bitch!

25 Aug

I know, I know. I am always complaining. I always come here either when something goes awfully wrong in my life or when I’m extremely excited and/or happy about something. But whatever.  I write for me.  It might be selfish, but this is my own personal way of complaining to the Universe for all the shit it throws at me.  I normally use Twitter for venting because  I know no one who follows me actually pays attention to the nonsense I write so I might as well tweet that I’m gay or that I’m pregnant and no one will notice. But sometimes, 140 characters is just not enough.

So instead of writing a recap of my awesome summer vacation (well, partly awesome because some pretty shitty stuff went on during it too) I am writing a list (how predictable!) of  all the unfortunate things that have befallen me lately:

* I was “swimming”  in the ocean at Clearwater Beach –  the most amazing beach I’d ever been to0- and a stupid wave knocked me over, an unexpected current dragged me in and almost made me drown.

* While I was underwater, all that salt water and sand got in my ear and gave me one of the worst ear infections I’ve ever had. Seriously, the pain was so bad I COULDN’T SLEEP. And my sleep is sacred! I sacrifice it for nothing or no one!

*I spent a little too much money while in Colombia more than I’d expected. And to say I’m broke now is an understatement.  And of course, I had to get sick and get a bunch of medicine as soon as I arrived to NC.

*My phone is broken and I can’t afford a new one right now.

*I lost my ATM card

*I lost my school ID card. And my Colombian ID. And some very important documents from work.

*A bank in Colombia which I obviously will not mention here is shamelessly stealing from me and they even dared to give me a bad credit report. The worst part is I can’t defend myself because I am  not there right now.

*I got sick on the first day of school.

*I got an email from my bank here today saying that I had an overdraft fee.

*I owe most of my paycheck already. And I won’t get paid until next Tuesday.

* My hair is frizzy, I have a rash on my arms and my nails are brittle.

*There’s nothing I can do to solve these problems right now so all I can do is breathe deeply and try to forget about it.

There. I feel a little better. That’s it for today. I need to go to sleep now so I can wake up early for school tomorrow. On second thought, maybe tomorrow or the day after that, I will write that recap of my summer vacation. But I warn you, there will be lists and lots of comparisons between Colombia and the US. Oh, and there will be complaining too.