Thanksgiving in Bogotá

Thanksgiving Dinner

On Thursday I hosted Thanksgiving at my apartment in Bogotá. It was the first time I’ve ever been in charge of Thanksgiving dinner, and I was a bit concerned about how it would turn out, but fortunately I had lots of help and everyone seemed to enjoy the food. Continue reading

Top 5 Things I Miss from the Coast

Flag of Barranquilla

Today is my last day in Barranquilla; I go back to Bogotá tonight. The next time I’ll be here will be for CARNAVALES! I can’t wait. I’m excited to go back to Bogotá, but there are some things from Barranquilla that I have really missed, so I want to share my top five.  Continue reading

Why Colombia?

Exciting news! GoAbroad.com, one of the leading websites on meaningful travel and studying, living, and working abroad, has chosen to feature The Wanderlust Chronicles as their Blog of the Week. In honor of having my blog featured on GoAbroad.com, I want to tell you, Dear Reader, why I chose to, well, go abroad to Colombia. Continue reading

The Art of Translation

Translation Tools

My first experience with translation was in French class during college. My professor did an exercise with us where we had to first translate an excerpt of a book from French to English, and then another excerpt from English to French. He then showed us translations of the two pieces that had been done by professionals so that we could compare.

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My Journey to Obtain a Colombian Work Visa

also: How to Obtain a Colombian Work Visa in Venezuela.

View of Cucuta from my hotel room

I left Bogotá Wednesday morning and flew to Cucuta, the closest Colombian city with an airport to Venezuela. I was told that going to Venezuela is the easiest and cheapest way for a foreigner to obtain a Colombian visa. For some absurd reason that I cannot figure out, in order to obtain a visa for Colombia, one must go out of the country to a Colombian Consulate in another country. I do not understand why I can’t get a Colombian visa in Colombia, but that’s how it is. And before you say anything, Dear Latino Readers, I know. I know the visa process is extremely difficult and frustrating for you guys, to go to either the States or Europe. But that doesn’t make Colombia’s rules any less absurd or exasperating.

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Happy Love and Friendship Day!

Today is the Día de Amor y Amistad, or in English, Love and Friendship Day. It’s the Colombian version of Valentine’s Day, but instead of being just for couples or lovers or crushes, it’s also about friends. It is celebrated every year on the third weekend of September.

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Bus Etiquette in Colombia

Bus in Bogotá

Do you ever pay attention to how people interact on buses? Or public transportation in general? It’s quite an interesting microcosm, if you think about it; all of these strangers squeezed into a tight place, arms, shoulders, legs, and butts all touching with people you’ve never met before and will probably never see again.

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Job Interviews in Colombia

Recently I have gone on two job interviews, one in a school and one in a university, and wow, interview questions (at least in my experience) in Colombia are way different from those in the States. I have never felt so interrogated in my life.

The first interview was with a school for a 10th and 11th grade English teaching position. The interview began with a personality assessment test called the Wartegg test. Personally, I think personality tests and quizzes to “find out about yourself” are completely bogus. Basically, they are the same as fortune-telling. Occasionally what they say will be true, but usually it’s just luck or coincidence. I really dislike tests trying to tell me about me.

Wartegg Personality Assessment

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Colombian Cuisine

When discussing cultural differences of a place, one simply cannot ignore the food. Colombia has some very interesting and different foods that also vary within different regions of the country.

First, the fruits. There are some crazy fruits found in Colombia. Well, crazy to a gringo, that is. No Colombian meal is complete without a pitcher of freshly made fruit juice. In the coast, I drank juice of pineapple, mango, blackberry, passion fruit, guava, strawberry, orange, mandarin, lulo, corozo, tomate de arbol, guanabana, and many others. There are even more unusual fruits that are not commonly made into juices. My favorite is definitely tomate de arbol. It’s sort of like a citrusy tomato juice—think V-8 Splash, not the regular V-8.

Arepa de choclo con queso-Medellin

Frozen White Corn Arepas

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Back in Colombia!

I’ve been back in a Colombia for two weeks and have been extremely busy looking for jobs and apartment hunting. Thus far, the job search has been going much better than the apartment hunt. I think I grossly underestimated how much I can expect to pay for a decent apartment in a good location. I have a few more prospects that I am going to check out this weekend, and one actually is well within my price range, but I’m a bit skeptical.

Bogotá from Monserrate

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