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Saturday, August 31, 2013

The Protests

So Colombia has gotten rather interesting lately, to say the least. It all started when the farmers here starting protesting because the government was not giving them a fair price for their produce. It is costing them more to cultivate produce than they are receiving at the market and the government is not giving them any kind of subsidies. I can understand their frustration but, at first it wasn't anything out of the ordinary. I choose to live in third world and emerging economies so protest and civil unrest are a fact of life. People in these countries are much more vocal about problems than Americans are back home.

What made this different is that there is other groups protesting as well. Teachers,Students,Miners,Farmers,Healthcare Workers,Truckers and the list goes on. Now they have all united into one massive group and they are blocking the roads and messing with transport and generally making life difficult until the government gives in and now "regular" citizens have joined the protests. At first the government/police/military was pretty restrained but they certainly have not been giving the protesters what they wanted. Then people started dying. A few protesters and a few police. People started getting hurt and things got a little crazy.

Now the president has suspended talks with the protesters (superrrr great idea right?) and declared martial law. He has sent 50,000 military troops into Bogota and the surrounding areas and there is talk of a nightly curfew. The mayor of Bogota has also outlawed alcohol sales in certain areas of Bogota to keep the violence down. Food prices are starting to increase (due to the truckers striking and the farmers blocking the roads) and the protests are getting more frequent. But, so far neither side will give. In America when people protest generally it goes on for a day or two and then nothing. People generally are not truly motivated to protest. Here this could go on for months. People are very strong willed here because they have to be. The government generally does not budge here until things get really bad.

Don't worry about me, I am safe and not locked up in my apartment just yet.  I plan to keep myself in one piece and try real hard not to get tear gassed or beat up. I will keep yall updated. If you want to read more about the situation here right now, Translate this article into English or your language.

Take care and remember as messed up as you think America might be right now and if you blame Obama (or whoever else) just remember that your country is not being held hostage and under martial law, with the military taking control and able to arrest whoever they want for whatever reason. Be thankful for what you have. Americans in general (not all Americans) take their freedoms for granted and do not care to protest or be motivated to change anything BECAUSE nothing is REALLY bad back home. But that is not the case in all countries. For the most part all these people are protesting because they feel they have no choice and have to force the government's hand. They are not doing it to be purely malicious and they just want to be able to have the basic rights and make a decent living.


Thursday, August 22, 2013

D-Wayne and I

I know I have really slowed down on this blog and don't write so much anymore but when I have the motivation and something interesting to write I make sure to put it here. Well a few interesting things have happened recently so here goes.  Roughly three years ago I was living in Auckland New Zealand and I met Dwayne (via Couch Surfing). Here in Colombia organized events from Couch Surfing are not that popular but in New Zealand that was exactly the opposite. We had a weekly meeting in Auckland and usually monthly outing somewhere. It was at one of these events that I met Dwayne. So I was pretty excited when I found out he was coming here to Colombia. I managed to convince him to come visit me in Bogota so it was really great to see him again. He was here for 4 days staying in my apartment and luckily the girls were cool with it all. Did I mention that Mark has moved out and I now live with a Swedish girl and a Colombian girl. I am surrounded by estrogen all the time but all of us get along really well.

It was nice when Dwayne was here because I got to be a tourist again for the first time in a long while and I even got to do some things I have never done before. I took him to Monserrate (the view point above the city) and to particularly touristy places but he seemed to have fun and I did as well. We did visit a few places I had never been before. Luckily the weather held out for us, (For the most part) I enjoyed playing tour guide in my adopted city. Dwayne was the perfect house guest and I am really glad I got to see him after three long years.

The highlight of his visit here was when we made New Zealand meat pies. For those of you who don't know what they are, you should Click Here it had been so long since I had a proper meat pie, I was super super excited! Because they just don't exist here in South America. I fell in love with them when I lived in Oz and NZ and you can't even really find them properly in The States. We found a decent recipe and then went on a quest for the freshest ingredients. Luckily I live very close to a farmers market type place where you can get everything cheap and fresh. The only thing we couldn't find was pre-made pie crust so we had to make our own. We calculated the whole process from start to in our bellies would take two hours. Because you had to prepare the meat and veg and then let it simmer. It actually took us 4.5 hours haha.

We prepared everything according to the recipe we found online and it all worked out great except the crust. It was ok but not perfect. I wish we could have made it better. After 4.5 hours of slaving away we had three meat pies with excellent filling in a mediocre crust. It still tasted almost like Heaven to Dwayne and I after being deprived for so long.  Even Andrea (My Colombian roommate) liked it! Cornelia is a vegetarian so she missed out big time hehe. Next time I make this I am going to do better on the crust and maybe make one large meat pie instead of three little ones. I also could make a stew just purely out of the filling and not even bother with the crust. It was that good!

This was the first time in recent memory I have actually cooked something from scratch (with Dwayne's help of course) and if I get good enough at this I am actually considering selling these meat pies. I know Colombians would love these! So wish me luck lol. Yall take care,Tyler

P.S. Here is a great video for your enjoyment.

Thursday, August 01, 2013


I usually don't like to talk about relationships because it is a sensitive subject for me but the other day I read something interesting that inspired me to write this post. I read a post from some married woman and the headline title was "My husband is not my soul mate" that was shocking enough to grab my attention. You just usually don't hear married women say or write things like that. She went on to explain that she loved her husband very much and wouldn't want to be married to anyone else but that she could have been equally compatible with a number of other people. It was just a lucky roll of the dice that she married who she did, when she did and their love grew from there. Basically, she didn't believe in love at first sight.

After all the ups and downs I have had (relationship wise) I think I really agree with this. I have had some great relationships,some ok ones, and some terrible ones. All part of the learning process for me. There have been a few girls along my travels where had I stayed in that certain county for longer then I really feel something could have developed. After visiting 20+ countries, I have been exposed to a true mountain of women. All shapes,sizes,colors,races and personalities. I have been very lucky to experience variety. Some of these relationships have been great and had I (or she) made different choices it is possible that we could still be together or even married by now.

I try hard not to regret the past and look upon everything as the next step in the process towards my eventual long term solid relationship. Those of you who know me well, know that I have jumped the gun a few times now and really felt that I found the one and then found out she wasn't the one. When it doesn't work out, it hurts. For a while. Or when I (or she) makes choices that breaks us apart when we have a good thing going, that hurts. For a while. But just like everything else in life, after a while you get over it and move on. I have been able to do that every time in my life except once. There is still one girl from my past that is stuck in my mind and my life like a bad habit I can't get rid of. It is not necessarily a bad thing and she may not be the only girl on this planet that I am truly compatible with, but for whatever reason I still have these strong feelings for her all these years later and she knows exactly who she is. We both made the choices that we did which have set us on separate paths (forever it seems) and I do have a few regrets about that (even though I try not too) but, everything happens for a reason as they say.

I guess what I am trying to say is there is a multitude of women on this planet who are compatible for me, from my past,present and future. All I need to is find her. But I won't try too hard because as soon as you start "trying" really hard is when it doesn't happen. It is also possible that I may never find my soul mate, but regardless of what happens I have (overall) had a really happy,blessed life. I have been very lucky and couldn't ask for much more. Who knows, my future wife may be reading this post right now. Or I may meet her tomorrow.Maybe I already know her. Or maybe I meet her in twenty years. Only time will tell.

Yall take care. Tyler