These Hips Don’t Lie

April 1, 2013 | By | 1 Comment

I’m back in the US after spending a week in Colombia. This is another journal of my trip. Here was the first in case you missed it.

The combination of winding roads, high elevation and Mario Andretti wannabe drivers made me super nauseous every time we got in a cab. Incidentally, if I ever drive a cab, I’m going to have “Who’s Gonna Drive You Home Tonight” playing on loop and will periodically wink at the passengers via the rear-view mirror while it is playing.

We ate all kinds of delicious foods. My favorite was a hot Arepa in a remote village. Part of me wishes I never ate it, because now I want to be able to eat more of them whenever I feel like it. It’s like that song about a taste of honey being worse than none at all. It’s the same reason I wish I had never gone on that date with Jennifer Love-Hewitt.

Arepa

On the topic of women, I heard a lot about the city of Metagene, which is where many of the models come from. Every time I heard that word, it reminded me of the Michael Jackson song “Billie Jean”. You know – about the one who would dance. On the floor. In the round.

Also on the topic of Colombian women, I learned from a co-worker today that when he visited the country his tour guide pointed out Shakira’s house! BUT, my tour guide never took ME to see Shakira’s HOUSE! Are you reading this Goofus? This is unforgivable. I take back every kind word I said about your hospitality.

My friend (aforementioned Goofus) has a cleaning lady (not sure what the politically correct word is here) who comes twice a week. I was the only one home during her first visit. She is a very kind lady, who enjoys loooong conversations – even if neither person can understand what the other is saying. After a while, I just started pointing to myself and repeating the words “no comprende” and “estupido”. The communication barrier was really frustrating, though more Spanish came back to me as the week went along.

The most heartbreaking part of the trip was all the pimps we encountered. One night, four separate men solicited us for encounters with their “chicas”. From my understanding, many of the girls are forced or tricked into this line of work.

Another surprise was the police officers with assault rifles everywhere. More worrisome were the two men with assault rifles who weren’t in any kind of uniform that we passed by on the other side of the road. (Don’t worry mom. I’m okay. I know you’re reading this.) Certain areas of the country are Guerilla territory and it isn’t like you can go wherever you want. At one point we wondered if we had gotten closer to this line than we thought.

On my return trip to the US, I had a layover in New Jersey. I was called out to have my bags hand checked. When I asked what made me so suspicious, I was told that I look like a normal guy and it is usually the ones you least expect that are involved in drug dealing. I guess he watches “Breaking Bad” too.  As he was searching through my backpack, he caught me red-handed with an “Aladdin” DVD and wanted to know what I was doing with it. Hey, if enjoying princess movies is a crime, I plead guilty. Incidentally, lunch at the Wok n’ Roll broke my calorie counter.

I’m having an easier time adjusting to life back in the USA than my smartphone, which keeps displaying the weather for the Tan Binh District. I’m guessing this explains why my sister keeps getting a “subscriber is not available” error when she tries to call. Basically, my phone thinks I’m in Vietman. Maybe it’s a sign telling me where to go next.

shakira

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  1. Julie Boyd says:

    From C.S. Lewis quotes to a Breaking Bad reference. I’m in awe of these journals. 🙂

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