Never one to miss a trip, I finished out the month of February with a quick trip to Maryland for a friend’s wedding and a weekend venture to Barranquilla for Carnaval.
Carnaval was a good time, though I can’t say it was the most fun I’ve had in Colombia. I suppose I had a National Geographic idea of what the world’s second largest Carnaval would be like, complete with everyone (including me) wearing extravagant, bejeweled costumes through las calles.
Instead, events were a bit more structured. Parades were scheduled for certain times, and you had to buy decently priced tickets to enter. Various neighborhoods had events and concerts, but it wasn’t necessarily all over the city.
During the day, we were able to have a bunch of Fulbright kids over to our hotel pool, free of charge.I saw way more Fulbright kids during the weekend than I usually do and it was a ton of fun (I even saw two people I had met on previous trips who were staying at my same hotel! One girl I met in the coffee region, and one who I met in the Tatacoa Desert).
We spent most of the hot, coastal afternoons lounging in the pool. Then, we went to parades during the late afternoon, and out at night. But, my favorite organized part of Carnaval ended up being the “Baile La Calle” concert on my first night there. Several blocks were roped off so that people could dance through the streets; there were DJs and drinks and food throughout, and a large stage with live music at the far end.
Only a few days after getting back to Bogotá, I moved to a new apartment with two new people and my friend, Mary. It’s a bit farther north from I where I lived before, and in a really cute neighborhood with more bakeries and fancy restaurants. It’s been a nice change, and I think the past month has passed quickly because of it. Eating and drinking, researching and reading, enjoying my new apartment and my new roommates.