An Update Long Overdue

by theadventuresofbeka

So back in December I went home to visit my family and boyfriend in a short two weeks. I managed to pack three cities, two states and a vicious intestinal bacterial infection into those fourteen days. I am a fan of slow traveling, but I was limited to two weeks outside of Colombia thanks to my Fulbright contract. I visited two different states because my family and B don’t live anywhere near each other (which is a shame).

I had a great time, but I was really disappointed by the fact that I was extremely ill the first week – so sick that I found it difficult to get off the couch. After getting lab results and an antibiotic, I started to feel better, but by that time, I was already far away from my family and visiting B and his family. When I returned to Colombia, I was sick (again) and sad. I wanted to be back with my family enjoying time with them or exploring the Amazon. I actually had a flight ticket purchased to Leticia in the Colombian Amazon, but I decided that it was wiser to not go seeing as I was sick.

My body healed by mid-January, but I was definitely still very homesick. Plus, it didn’t help that my university was requiring my presence even though I had been given absolutely no work. I spent the rest of January and the first half of February moaning to my roommate about how miserable I was. I also moaned to my family and my boyfriend, but not as much, because I didn’t want them to worry. I knew that once I was back at work with something to occupy my time I would feel better. I chose to not write during this time because I have people who care about me who read this, and I didn’t want them to worry unnecessarily.

It wasn’t all dark and gloomy during this time though. My roommate and I went to all our favorite coffee shops over and over again in order to feel like we were doing something.

This is my favorite Colombian dessert: arequipe con queso (caramel with cheese).

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I had a Fulbright friend come and visit, and I had the chance to go to a beautiful lake up in the mountains that is located in the department I live in (Boyacá).

Playa Blanca on Laguna de Tota. (This is definitely a #latergram).

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At the end of February, classes started again and I joyfully threw myself into work again. My schedule this semester is even crazier than the last because in addition to all of the work I was doing last semester I am also leading an Academic Writing Workshop. (This was my suggestion). In general, this semester has been easier with regards to planning because I have a lot of lesson plans to draw from and I know most of the students and professors that I am working with.

My life has felt like a whirlwind since I started working again. In addition to my work at the university, I have begun to read in preparation for the research papers I will be writing this summer that will summarize my experience here. I also had college friends come and visit, and I traveled a bit with them. We also got a whole week off which I used to lay by a pool in San Gil and research and get re-enrolled at my university in the US.

At this point, it’s kind of difficult to focus on my life here because my mind already wants to transition to the next thing. I am channeling this energy into the reading that I am doing, and I am trying to remember to enjoy what time I have left in Colombia. Thanks to the current crazy value of the dollar, I am going to finish out my contract and go home almost directly afterwards. I have six weeks of  teaching left, and I plan on making them good ones.

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