Going to jail is harrowingly boring. The evening before my friend Larisa goes to visit Jorge, I accompany her as she checks off the visiting requirements. Everything must be perfectly contained to get inside. We buy toilet paper, laundry soap, and fried chicken to pack into a transparent plastic container no bigger than four litres.
Author: Anna Vogt
International Worker’s Day, or May Day, is a national holiday in Colombia. Across the country, workers and unions march to celebrate workers’ rights, and the long struggle of workers all over the world for dignified working conditions, especially in the late 19th century: “Eight hours to work, eight hours to sleep, eight hours for what
I made yogurt yesterday. I didn’t feel like I had much of a choice. After a Monday long with meetings and trying to both write and speak coherent sentences, I was done with living in my head. Instead, I boiled milk, let it cool, added a starter, and put it on top of the fridge to ferment. This morning, I woke up to a thermos full of creamy yogurt, the most productive thing I have accomplished in weeks.
My post-accord Bogota feels pretty much the same as pre-peace accord Bogota. My neighbours all go about their daily routines- grocery store, walk the dog, go to work- and so do I. When I have a conversation with a friend in public, even in English, we still instinctively lean in closer, lower our voices, and
“For being a foreigner, Ashima is beginning to realize, is a sort of lifelong pregnancy- a perpetual wait, a constant burden, a continuous feeling out of sorts. It is an ongoing responsibility, a parenthesis in what has once been ordinary life, only to discover that that previous life has vanished, replaced by something more complicated
Saturday was the 17th anniversary of Mampujan’s displacement and the massacre in Las Brisas. I sat in a coffee shop off the main square of Villa de Leyva and very slowly ate dessert, holding Mampujan to the light. Besides birthdays and Christmas, there are a whole new set of dates that now mark my life:
If I actually had milk and butter in my house, I would be eating pancakes for dinner tonight. However, it appears, at least looking in my fridge, that I have already given up grocery shopping for Lent. Truthfully, besides facetiously giving up everything I don’t have or like- this year, vaccum cleaners and salsa dancing-
When I was in Haiti last year, we spent a lot of time talking about peanuts. The USAD was planning on sending shipments of free peanuts to Haitian schools, as a tasty and nutritious snack, and, incidentally, a way of getting rid of a US peanut surplus. While on the surface, food aid looks like
“This is what the ecosystem achieves: the fullness of life with tens of thousands of species interwoven and interdependent.”- The Hidden Lives of Trees I like trees. I like how tall they are, their branches a constant moving juxtaposition against the sky. I like the way we lean against their trunks, soaking up shade on
There are still moments, as I pass families and small groups of friends in the park, that I catch my breath over snatches of conversation. It is all normal chatter: dinner plans, boy problems, family news. The miracle is in my effortless understanding of everyday Spanish: la cena, el tipo, la tía. A new language