Somehow, all this:
fit into this:
Hint: Roll it.
Note the threadbare leggings, flip flops and travel pouch. My mom helpfully told me that everyone could see my underwear just as I was going through security. Maybe that’s why I didn’t get strip scanned?
I sat next to a Colombian woman who offered to connect me with her son, who rents rooms to students; watched The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, and finished Season 3 of Six Feet Under. Going through customs and security was long but uneventful. I asked for a 90 day visa and got a 30 day one – most likely because my jumbled explanation that I was in Colombia as part of my studies, but was studying at Columbia and just completing a study here.
The taxi stand outside El Dorado, the Bogotá airport, should be replicated everywhere. I pushed my trolley up to a window outside the airport, told them the address of my hostel, and got a printed paper to give to the cab. No negotiation, no confusion.
It finally hit me that I was someplace new, that I was moving to another country, that I was in Bogotá when we were driving away from the airport. That trip always does it for me, whether it’s driving in to Moscow from Sheremetyevo or Santo Domingo from Las Americas. Of course, my hostel had moved without updating their website, so there were a few moments of frenzied scavenging for the new location (3 blocks away). Overall, not a bad way to get into a city.
1 borrowed granola backpack (46.2 lbs)
+ 1 NorthFace backpack bought for $20 outside CUMC (20 lbs)
+ 1 fancy leather bag (15 lbs)
+ rainboots (felt light as air)
= 5 textbooks, 2 binders, 1 laptop, and the pile of clothes you saw above.