Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Wednesday 21st - wrapping!

This is the first time I am writing about a day actually on the day! At 10am. Here are all the toys that we bought last week. There is one item that is not on show, a large cuddly Mini Mouse. The reason for that is that Nini and Sofia are coming this morning at 11.30 to wrap all the toys with me and Mini is Sofia's present. But most of what you see is for a community of children who live near to the finca of Nini's sister.

Most toys were around 8-10mils. One or two, for the family were around 70mils. The total bill was 450mils. 450,000 pesos. Sounds a lot? Converted to euros, it comes to 133 euros. Gosh, some parents spend more than that on one child at Christmas! Now you know why I can afford to be generous here. My euro buys lots of pleasure! For me too!

Oh, maybe you can see some shoe boxes. One or two of the family are receiving shoes as a present.
On average I was spending about 20 euros on each one. So I guess my total bill for presents was about 200 euros. Bearing in mind I paid 2800 euros for my air ticket, that is not very much in comparison. I hope they don't buy me anything significant as a present. I was happy to get free food and drink on Christmas Eve rather than paying for it, which was my intended fate!!

Sometimes I think I am spending an awful lot of money, and I guess I am. But when I get back to Spain, it will represent a fairly small dent in my account. And I am not using gas for heating, I am not paying for my normal costs in Girona such as two taxis a week on average, eating out. And, as I have said before, it does no good to anyone sitting in the banks gaining 0.001% interest. Let's bring some joy to a small part of the world! Just so long as it's not taken for granted.....

The apartment is great! You have seen the kitchen (if you want to call it that) and you have now seen the bedroom. A young woman who works for the flat management, Milena, comes in most days to clean the flat. She even washes the dishes. We communicate by WhatsApp. She just called me to say she's not coming in today which is just as well because there will be three of us in the flat very soon.

Nini and Sofia and I went to get some food and to buy 3 more presents. I am fascinated by the fact that the temperature outside is more or less the same inside most buildings. I will give you an example. Here is a photo of a shopping mall. Notice anything different? No, it is quite normal.

Now look the other way!

Open to the outside. And I didn't notice any difference in the temperature! After I took the photo we went and had a meal.

I wanted to show you what we had to eat - in euros it was very cheap. All that for 13 euros!
Because this blog is public, I've pixellated Sofia but it didn't hurt very much! For my friends, I am very happy to share a bigger selection of photos without pixellation and some additional text. Just let me know either by writing a comment here or by writing to me separately! I can send you a Dropbox link to the full photo-album.

We returned to my apartment and I agreed to pay for all the food for the 24th if the men supplied the alcohol. It was an easy choice to make because it was a free choice. 70 euros. I threw the four 50mils notes on the table and Nini gathered them up. I would have spent the same in Girona for a Christmas party. But I don't like drinking the Colombian tooth-water so I bought a bottle of French wine to take along. But no one else will be drinking wine. I think it will be a tough night. Only two beds among 7 people, a mixture of adults and children. I think I will not be getting very much sleep. Dancing yes. I hope Nini gives me one slow dance but maybe I am hoping too much. The same will happen one week later on the 31st in the Finca, very little sleep. Even more so! Or maybe I mean... even less so. Haha, rather like the last night in Cartagena. Nini explained that this was very much the Colombian way; enjoying life, dancing all night.

I am sure you can tell... I am having lots of fun... but I think that you can see that there have been difficult times also. But I expected that! Regrets about coming here? Noooooo!

1 comment:

  1. I am pleased that you pixelated Sofia's picture. So few of us think about a child's life beyond our own. Who knows what changes await her and the society in which she lives? (That question comes from an American, who now has first-hand experience with the avalanche of unexpected changes that life -- political life in particular -- can bring.)

    It's a delight to read about your adventures in Colombia. Cartagena appealed incommensurately to Louise when we were there; I'll share your URL with her and she'll no doubt share her enthusiasm on these pages.

    A very Merry Christmas to you (and Nini, and Sofia) from the US! I eagerly await more posts.