Bogotá vs La Costa: Is change in the hair?

April 10, 2014


Don't change anything about yourself...

I have a new boyfriend. He is from a part of Colombia so famous for producing macho, chauvinistic young men that at first I didn’t want to go out with him. And when I did, I thought I knew what to expect. I would have to teach the “How to date a blonde girl 101” […]

Posted in: Bogotá, Colombia

Colombia: Is it something in the jeans?

April 6, 2014


I openly appreciate diversity

I’m a tall woman and, depending on the proximity of chocolate cake and opportunities for wine consumption, a slim one. In fact, I was so skinny as a teenager they used to call me “sticky” instead of Vicki and wondered if I would ever grow curves. Politer people still asked if I wanted to be […]

Posted in: Bogotá, Colombia

Do dreams have an expiry date?

March 14, 2014


Orwell in Burma, top row, third from left

One of the best things about travelling is the excuse it gives you to pre-read. Off to Colombia? Read García Márquez. Off to Chile? Read Allende. Off to India? Read Shantaram. Off to Cuba, read bloody everything. It is a bit like being in a book club – it forces you to make time for […]

Posted in: Bogotá, Burma, Colombia

You love your country but does it love you?

March 7, 2014


When I was 22 and knew everything

Every time I am on a plane and I feel that little bump which means the wheels have touched down at El Dorado airport, I feel so relieved. It’s always good to be home; returning to a place that you love and understand, where you feel loved and wanted, where you have hopes and dreams […]

Posted in: Bogotá, Burma, Colombia

Alright. How are you supposed to love yourself more?

March 3, 2014


Monks. Whatever gives you meaning.

I was lucky enough to visit Burma recently – a dream of mine for some years – and in superb clichéd fashion, my friend and I met a young Buddhist monk out taking his morning stroll on the U Bein Bridge, just outside Mandalay. I confessed to the monk – I am wont to confess […]

Posted in: Bogotá, Burma, Colombia

Taking the Burmese train

February 20, 2014


Rangoon Railway Station at first light.

Yes, there are two types of people in this world. There are those whose body clocks rouse them early, snapping them awake at dawn and leaving them to fade hopelessly with the dusk and then there are the “night owls” – who rise foggy and confused yet come to life just in time to sample […]

Posted in: Burma

Colombians: Catch me if you can?

January 30, 2014


Everything will be fine... as long as no-one asks for my cedula...

About a year ago I took a taxi on a reasonably long journey – but one that I know well. When I arrived at my destination, via the usual route, the taxi was about 30% more expensive than usual. I argued for a bit but there is not much you can do in the face […]

Posted in: Bogotá, Colombia

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