Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Bucara-whahhh?? and other reflections.

I´m in Bucaramanga. It´s not that cool... it´s sort of just a big commercial city full of shopping centers. I tried hard to enjoy it today, but genuinely couldn´t find anything really to do (except one thing-- I tried the toasted ants! hormigas! yes, ants are the popular snackfood of choice here in Bucaramanga, although I was promised they would taste like peanuts, and they most certainly did not... blah), so I´m enjoying the luxury of taking it easy, something I haven´t done much of lately. I´m staying in an actual hotel, since they don´t appear to have hostels here, and enjoying free internet (notice the miraculous appearance of a couple blog posts I´d had half-written that are now finished and posted). Tomorrow I´m heading to Bogotá to stay again with Gustavo, Diana´s friend there (who is now my friend) for my last night. I´m hoping to arrive in time to have one final hurrah in Bogotá before taking off on Thursday.

Colombia. What a cool country. I´ve met so many of the nicest people here. It´s not at all what the sterotypes say, filled with nothing but cocaine and coffee. The security has been greatly improved in the past few years due to the current president´s reforms, and everywhere you look there are armed military men patroling the roads. There´s no need to be scared-- they are there for our protection, and frankly I feel very safe here. People are generally friendly, open, hospitable, and super fun. There is a rich sense of culture and community here, and such spirit in the air-- music, art, and dance are everywhere. The climate is great (well, Bogotá is a bit chilly...). And I have been so well received that I feel forever indebted.

As usual... my mind is racing about what to do next. Typical Erica, I know, still not clear on the life plan. I´m clear that Argentina is not right for me, and I´m clear that I need some time at home. I miss my family and friends so, so much, and am just dying to see everyone. So much has changed in the past year I´ve been gone, and I want to be a part of it again. But... there is still that tick tick ticking inside me that says... travel... go... explore... it´s just who I am I suppose, and why not just accept that about myself rather than try to resist it?

I´ve been considering teaching in Asia, where the pay is a lot better. I´ve thought a lot about trying to find an internationally-related job back home. Grad school at SIT is a definite possibility, although the money factor scares me to death. And a big part of me wants to put all I can into finding an American company with offices in Latin America to work for, so I can make money in dollars but live here. Idealist.org is calling me. Any job offers, ideas, or pieces of advice are welcome. I wouldn´t say I´m lost, per se, just in a serious period of reflection. I´m looking forward to the moment when I make a decision, and know in my gut that it´s right.

For now, I´m genuinely enjoying this adventure I have been blessed with. Who knows if I will ever have this opportunity again?? I am going flat broke, but going broke has never been so much fun, and I believe getting to know the world, challenging myself, and having these new experiences is 100% worth it. I just hope that this period of time will help me understand myself and the world better, and will help steer me in the right direction...


samantha transfeld said...

Voy a tomar un crucero a Buenos Aires donde permanecerá sólo un día y que podrá disfrutar de mi tiempo entre el turismo y las compras, ¿podría darme algunos consejos para el almacén de la compra con precios asequibles, especialmente las chaquetas de cuero, zapatillas Nike y perfumes. Gracias.

Hi, I'm Erica. said...

hola samatha! recomiendo que vayas a la calle avellaneda (no el barrio, la calle)... se compra mucha ropa alli super barata. para ropa mas lujosa pero mas cara, puedes ir por la calle santa fe, la calle florida, o al shopping alto palermo. suerte!!