By gregebersole

March 11, 2011

Category: Travel

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Tomorrow evening, Colombia’s Shakira is giving a concert in Bogota, the only stop in her country. Since she couldn’t sing in any other cities here, they are broadcasting the concert live here in Cali at the Parque de las Banderas. There will be a huge screen and enormous sound system. To get in, you just bring some rice or beans for the recent flood victims in our country. I’m so close to the park that I could almost sit on my roof and watch and hear the concert. This photo shows the remains of a Shakira poster on a wall.

Last night, a Couchsurfing friend, Liliana, was celebrating her birthday at Tin Tin Deo with the CS group. I hadn’t been there for almost 2 months. The last time I went I felt that there were too many foreigners and not enough women. I didn’t have a good time. I didn’t even dance and I left quite early. Last night was different a lot of fun. I visited with a lot of my CS friends and danced. We were a large and lively group. At one point, there was the birthday dance for Liliana. As is the salsa custom, the birthday person, in this case a woman, is in the center of the group and all the guys get a chance to dance with her briefly. Or women if they wish too also. I was taking some photos for Liliana and was just putting the camera away when I was pushed into the center to dance with her. We danced a little and then the song ended. It turned out I was her last partner, so as it ended, I held her close and gave her a dip. Perfect timing for me. It was fun. On Thursday nights, the club closes at 1 a.m. I left and quickly walked home and got about 4 1/2 hours of sleep. I got up at 6 as usual and was at the gym by 6:40, hard at work on my routine.

Spanish class was good. Even though I hadn’t finished all of my homework, it worked out okay. We spent the class reading our chapter in the Malinche book and talked about it. We then went over some of the questions. What homework we didn’t finish, we can bring on Monday. After reading the chapter again in class, I understand it a lot better. There is always so much vocabulary to learn in each chapter and it takes me forever to read it. I’m constantly looking up words in practically every line. The good thing is that I’m learning a lot and everyone tells me that my Spanish is so much better. I’m so happy for that. I had commented on Facebook that I seemed to be studying and working hard at it, but still seem to have a hard time getting past basic Spanish. A friend of mine from Portland, Rochelle, wrote that it takes about 7 years to learn the language and get fluent at it. She said to remember that these friends have been speaking it all their lives. It was a good message for me to hear. Some things take time, but in the end it’s worth it. I am so appreciative now that I can carry on conversations with almost anyone here.


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