I was very excited for this trip.
I love meeting new people, discovering different cultures and I have always been fascinated with all the different types of people/cultures in the world which make the world so perfect, you can always learn from them.
Everyone has a place in the world and we all combine to make it whole.
I didn’t leave Europe until December 2014, that’s when I went to Columbia. I was curious what life is like over there, what people are like, they’re personality and nature, their traditions, what makes them who they are, and in reality, I wanted to know what we could learn from each other. I had no idea what was waiting for me on the other side of the world, but I really wanted to find out.
There is a lot of negative press about this country and many people regard it as dangerous, if you are one of them I want to assure you there is no need to be afraid.
Columbia had a huge effect on me ( Medelin, Cartagena, Guatape, Jardin…), I always remember these cities with great fondness for all that it has given me. I am sure you would love it.
The country is beautiful. Huge forests, thick vegetation, bananna trees, mountains, wildlife is colourful. The people are kind, full of life, happy, they always have something nice to say to you. I discovered plenty of fruits, vegtables and food in general, which I never even heard of let alone tried it.
Everything is different.
I realised in Columbia that I know very little about the world and also that just because someone has a different perspective on things than me, it doesn’t make it wrong, it’s just simply different.
I learned a lot from the people of Columbia, they always welcomed me lovingly and respectfully, they were very kind.
The most memorable things for me were:
– Every morning, before breakfast, people would eat fresh chopped up fruit – mango, papaya, mandarins,apples, grapes – and after the real breakfast would begin, which would usually be tortilla with some margarin and cheese with fresh vegtables and eggs.
( There are shops in Budapest where they sell latin-american ingredients, which is where is usually acquire mine from. For example their cornflour is pre cooked, normal cornflour is not good for making tortillas because the dough does not stay together.)
– I really like that because of the good weather people love exercising, and also that at a lot of sports fields, they would sell fresh fruit juices and chopped up fruits. You’d simply buy a melon or a pineapple and you are on your way again.
– People go to church a lot, on days of mass, sometimes more than once, mass is also a lot shorter in Columbia than in Hungary.
– If were talking religion… Columbians often don’t say ‘Gracias’ to say thank you but ” Mi Dios te lo pague’, may my god bless you… truly beautiful.
– Family is huge in Columbia. not only the smaller family but also, uncles, aunties, cousins and grandparents… on Sundays come together, to talk, play some board games, watch football, they are together – the mood is very intimate. Of course every family is different but I found that latin americans have a much bigger feeling of commitments towards family. I have been trying to implement these more frequent family gatherings into my life.
– Occupational hazard but I was very impressed with their garbage truck.
– Welcoming guests was very informative. At home a lot of the times we don’t even know what we should put on the table, what kind of cutlery we should put out, which table cloth to use, we survey everything more than once to make sure we show our best to people. Out there I found that everything is much simpler, but simpler for the better.
The most important thing is that people are together not the surroundings but the quality of the time spent together and the love and the respect for one and other.
If people ask me where I was made the food with the most love I always say Columbia. It was Auntie Nelly’s egg rice dinner, served in plastic plates. I can’t even describe the love with which she made it for me.
-The music. There is music day and night. In the houses, the streets, the shops, the bars- now I also wake up to music and if I feel like dancing nothing can stop me. It makes my morning better, my whole day.
– My favourite was the dog parking. When I went shopping there was a pole specifically for you to tie your puppies leash so you can shop without fearing they may run away. It’s a pity I have not seen anything like this in Hungary yet.
I could list many other examples, but what I consider to be especially important is that somehow people do care more of eachother there.
Unfortunately, here we do not even want to listen what a stranger wants to say to us because we believe that they are asking for money or wanting something from us, and we are basically disapproving.
It is different there.
To sum it up, I encourage everyone to see, to trvel – it is very worthwhile, I believe our experiences make us rich.