International Theatre Festival Has Opened!

The 13th Festival Iberoamericano de Teatro de Bogotá (Iberoamerican Theatre Festival) opened on Friday, March 23. It is the largest theatre festival in Latin America, held every two years in Colombia’s capital.

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Movie Review – Colombiana

As some of my Readers may know, I write for an online publication called Worldette. It’s a great website all about travel and lifestyle for women. One of the areas I write for is reviewing books and movies, and a couple of weeks ago I wrote about the movie Colombiana.

Colombiana is a film that raised a lot of controversy here in Colombia and in the States as well due to its inaccurate and stereotypical depiction of this beautiful country. I thought I would share my review in Worldette of the movie here on my blog, so if you want to check it out click on the link here.

Protests in Bogotá

On Friday, March 9, there were large protests and riots in Bogotá in retaliation against Transmilenio, the mass transportation bus system here in the city.  Continue reading

National Youth Leadership Conference

Since I returned to Colombia in January after the holidays, I have been having difficulty finding time to write blog posts, for which, Dear Reader, I apologize. The main reason is that I have been working with an organization called AIESEC, again, and found the perfect job in which I am currently working: planning a national youth leadership conference for one month, and working with an NGO for the following month. Continue reading

A New Year

Feliz Año Nuevo and Happy New Year (a bit belatedly)!

I am back in Bogotá after being home in the States for 3 weeks for vacation. Bogotá right now is delightfully empty, as many people leave during the holidays, often to Cartagena, Santa Marta, San Andres, and the US. Businesses are still open, but most people get a decent amount of time off over the winter holidays. Tomorrow, however, things will be back to normal.

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Merry Christmas Eve!

**Every night for the nine nights before Christmas Colombians celebrate novenas, so I will be writing a blog post every day about Colombian Christmas traditions. Feliz Navidad!**

Photo Courtesy of Dariela Cruz http://www.mamitalks.com

Today is the ninth and final day of novenas in Colombia, and it is Christmas Eve, or Nochebuena, when Colombians have their main Christmas celebration. Families gather today to have dinner, usually late at night, and many people also go to Midnight Mass. Continue reading

Colombian Christmas Traditions Day 8

**Every night for the nine nights before Christmas Colombians celebrate novenas, so I will be writing a blog post every day about Colombian Christmas traditions. Feliz Navidad!**

Sofia Vergara in "Undeck the Halls"

Today, the eighth day of novenas, is going to be a really short post. It’s almost Christmas, and things are getting busy! What I wanted to share with you today, Dear Reader, is actually a Modern Family episode. One of the main characters on the show is a Colombian woman played by Sofia Vergara, who is a famous Colombian actress. In the Christmas episode called Undeck the Halls from the first season, she talks a lot about different Colombian Christmas traditions and is trying to bring the traditions to her American family. It’s a good episode and talks about many of the traditions I have in my novenas posts. Here is a link to the episode:

Modern Family Colombian Christmas Traditions

Hope you enjoy it!

Colombian Christmas Traditions Day 7

**Every night for the nine nights before Christmas Colombians celebrate novenas, so I will be writing a blog post every day about Colombian Christmas traditions. Feliz Navidad!**

In Colombia, Christmas decorations, especially lights, are quite popular. From the end of November on, stores become filled with garlands, strands of lights, and ornaments for people to decorate their homes with. Colombians also buy artificial Christmas trees, as real pine trees are hard to come by.

December 7, La Noche de Las Velitas, is the official day to put up Christmas lights and decorations. Medellin and Bogotá especially go crazy with Christmas lights. This year Medellin had 16 million lights around the city, and Bogotá had 7 million. Both of the cities give tours so you can see all of the lights. Some people also put up lights in and around their homes, and many apartment buildings also decorate the outside.

Almost all Colombian homes will have a Christmas tree and a nativity scene, or pesebre. The nativity scene is especially important because during the novenas friends and families gather around it to sing villancicos and say prayers. However, Christmas trees have not always been a typical tradition in Colombian; this custom came over from the States. Also, people used to have live Christmas trees, but this is now illegal so as not to harm the environment.

Here is a video of the lights in Medellin:

Colombian Christmas Traditions Day 6

**Every night for the nine nights before Christmas Colombians celebrate novenas, so I will be writing a blog post every day about Colombian Christmas traditions. Feliz Navidad!**

Back for another day of Colombian Christmas Traditions! Today, the sixth day of novenas, I will be talking about aguinaldos. The literal English translation of aguinaldos differs because it can mean different things in different countries, but in this case it refers to games played during novenasContinue reading