It's been nearly 5 weeks since I've been here and in two days I will meet Jarrod in Bogota to travel to other parts of the country. Time has flown by and slowed down all at the same time. Since arrivig, I have met lots interesting people from all over the world and I've made some wonderful friends. Colombians, in general, are very friendlypeople and so many locals here have welcomed me into their lives. The transition from being a tourist to becoming part of a community is something I cherish deeply. When I first arrived I felt very alone in this little town, even though I kept myself busy visiting the main attractions. Now I can't walk into town without seeing someone I know who is eager to share a café or a cerveza with me in the plaza. These moments make my time here so much richer. I've had the opportunity to observe Luis teaching children Kung Fu, hike up to the lookout with Roland, William and Carolina, cook lunch with Lina and her roommate, get a massage from a friend of Lina, go to a party at the beautiful house that William designed and constructed, share coffee and cake with Ela, observe Fernando painting his latest masterpiece, participate in the Virgen del Carmen celebration in the small town of Sachica, go on group rides with local cyclists, and the list goes on and on!
Many travelers spend just a couple of days in Villa de Leyva. A Belgian asked me yesterday; are you bored yet? My answer? Not even close! You may be able to see all the attractions here in just a few days, but the most memorable experiences that come with the transition from tourist to local never get old. Here are some pictures of these moments I speak of:
Ela and I visiting Lina in La Galleta and sharing cake and coffee:
My good friend Lina:
Visiting the vineyard and winery that Mauricio is constructing (wine cellar behind us):
Watching the sunset in the plaza with Awad and Sebastian:
Making pizza and enjoying time with friends at William's beautiful house:
Lina and I showing off our big calves:
Having lunch with Lina and Beto before my massage (which cost me a bottle of Colombian rum).
Music in the plaza:
Another pizza and wine night with family at the hostel:
Luis and Carolina:
Me and Willy:
Making a fresh and delicious lunch with Lina and Maria Feenanda:
Visiting the land that Ivone and Ali bought where they plan to build their home:
Enjoying a cappuccino with my friend the painter, Fernando Botero.
Making brownies for Carolina's birthday:
Hiking with Willy, Carolina and Roland:
Thanks for reading. Next post should have pictures of my sweetie!