Vincent Valstar

Cannabis enthousiast – Seeking discomfort

Dutchies, Mojitos and Tomato Red (25.03-26.04)

So quite a long time ago, I wrote my fourth blog. Therefore, I thought it would be time to write another one! Lots of great and fun stuff happened this last month and many Dutchies have visited Bogotá (and me)! Moreover, this month was the second last one of my semester here in Colombia. Again, time flies so fast. Sit tight as this will be quite a sit (sorry for not sorry). Anyway, let’s start where we ended: Remco and my Spanish certificate: nosotros somos maestros de español! 

Remco y yo con nuestros certificados de español

Sjoerd and Thomas are two friends from my highschool. These badboys decided to travel through Latin America together and, of course, they took the great opportunity of visiting me in Bogotá (27.03.19)! I think it has been around 2 years ago that I’ve seen these lads for the last time, so it was very cool to see them again and talk with people from my own region (Westland represent!). We went to a BBC (Bogotá Beer Company), in Zona T and afterwards we went to a irish pub. Quite funny and unexpected: once we past a bar, Dutch music was playing: Blof – zoutelande. One does not experience that every day. Anyway, we had a great talk, complained like the Dutch always do and drank like the Dutch do. The day after, the guys visited me at La Sabana. I wish the guys all the best with their travels. I think they still must be in Ecuador now…

That upcoming weekend (as of 29.03.19) was dedicated to coffee. It all started on Friday, with a coffee tour with the exchange students and buddies in Chía, nearby our university. It was really fun. And as I am taking the ”World of Coffee” class, I knew a lot already what the guide explained. So I do learn some stuff here :)  

Don Luis moved over to Cajica, just above Chía, where our university is located. He invited friends over to his new home (on Friday 29.03.19) , where he lives together with Nieves. It was a cozy and crazy night. Besides, we took the game ”probabilidad” to the next level.

Anyway, the next day we had our World of Coffee class (on Saturday instead of Tuesday 7AM: mejor). Our teacher hosted together with Colo Coffee a roasting class and we learned how coffee is roasted and how the roasting process affects the green coffee in terms of taste, smell and more. The rest of the day I watched Friends (credits to Robbin, who continued to persuade me to watch the series, back in the Netherlands. Damn this is a good series).

This weekend was the weekend before the parciales (test week). Even though I ought to study that Sunday, I watched netflix all day long: Friends for the win! Sometimes, spending time with only yourself and your Friends is necessary (jaja, que broma).

Word goes around that Homeburger, an upcoming Colombian burger chain, has the best burgers in town. So, Vivien and I went out to try. She already ate there, and I have to say that the burgers weren’t bad. However, nothing can beat Velvet Burger and their 2 for 1 deal on Tuesdays (Auckland, New Zealand) and Toto Burgers (Split, Croatia), click on the name for their websites and see their precious burgers. Sorry for not sorry, Homeburgers ;). 

As some of you know, I live together with another exchange student from Italy. Well, now fate decided that Ajax (Dutch flag) and Juventus (Italian flag) should play each other in the Champions league. Thus, we decided to watch the first match! Even thoug a 1-1, Ajax was the better team and I am proud on this club as it greatly represent our little country in the big world of football (yes football, not soccer).

Simone and me

And now, como un plato principal en el restaurante: me presenta la aventura de semana santa con Don Roberto! (*applause*)

Rob is a friend from my home university back in the Netherlands. We made plans to visit each other in the semana santa, eventually he was crazy enough to fly to Bogotá! Rob arrived on Thursday 11.04.19. That evening we flew to Cartagena. Unfortunately, we got some problems with the airplane, so after 1hr of flying (out of the total 1.5hrs), we had to return back to El Dorado airport in Bogotá… The view on the way back to Bogotá was quite interesting. There was a lot of lighting and you saw some airplanes passing us in the direction of Cartagena. Anyway, we arrived, were put in a bus in which we drove arround the airport with for like 20 minutes, after which we stopped at our replacement plane. After a long night, we finally arrived in our hostel at 1AM (instead of 10PM…).

Don Roberto

Friday 12.04.19

After a short night, we took advantage of the available free breakfast, where we met Casper, a fellow Dutchie. He is traveling throughout Colombia for a while and we spent the upcoming days with him.

After breakfast we walked through the city and Casper joined later. Even though there was a free walking tour at 4PM, Casper stepped in as our private guide to take Rob and I to the highlights of the city. At one point, we decided that the devestating heat (going from 18 degrees in Bogotá to 35 in Cartagena is just a little different ;)) was too much and to retreat to our jacuzzi on the rooftop area of our hostel. That was worth it! The night was spent at a bar that sold 3 mojitos for only $20,000 pesos (that’s like 3 mojitos for 6EU). At the end Baptise joined as well: another exchange student from France, he’s a great friend! We even had a performance by Shakira, in my opinion, the best of her whole career (second, longer video here)

Her best performance right?

Saturday 13.04.19

Santa Marta! Together with Casper we took a bus to Santa Marta. We arrived quite late and ate at a great restaurant named Lulo. Afferwards we continued the tradition and found several pubs where we drank, of course, mojitos :)

Sunday was mainly discovering Santa Marta with 35 degrees, after which, of course, we retreated to the jacuzzi in our hostel, por que no? Anyway, for some, this Sunday was a special and holy Sunday. Apparently, the first episode of the last season of ‘The Game of Thrones’ was streamed. So there we sat, with some beers and 20 GoT enthousiasts. Rob and I don’t watch the show (yeah, sorry..), but I am kind of convinced to start watching as well.

Monday and Tuesday: Tayrona National Park.

That’s correct, the true adventurers are going to a national park as well! That was seriously quite the adventure. We woke up on Monday at 5AM, said goodbye to Casper, and went with a bus full of fruits (to be sold at the entrance of the park) to the park. Eventually, we were one of the first in the park, and with cloudy weather, the hiking-weather conditions couldn’t be better.

We arrived at the camping at 10AM. The rest of the day was relaxing at the beach. But at the beach is where it went downhill. At one point, the clouds made place for the sun, after which we put on sunscreen. The problem was, we were too late with putting on the sun screen. Yes, we were burned. And not just burned, no. We burned heavily. We both looked like lobsters and tomatoes combined (yeah, I know what you are thinking, that is and was awful).

Sleeping in our hammock wasn’t that great as well. in other words, it was an adventure. The hike back towards the entrance was quite heavy: backpack, too much sun, too hot, and a big as burned skin. So, what did we do when we arrived back at the hostel? Exacly, we got ourselves a beer and chilled in the jacuzzi. We bought a creme for the skin, which was our best friend for those upcoming 48hrs.

In the Netherlands, we have the famous ”Kapsalon,” the Colombians, have their competitive ”salchipapa.” Salchipapa is like a kapsalon, but not with kabab, but with sausages. They use shredded cheese rather than melded cheese. And it does not include tomato and cucumbers. However, Rob and I went on the quest to find a place to eat salchipapa; and I have to tell, the quest was completed. At a place called ”The Hulk” we found our salchipapa (with garlic sauce, yeah). This food is great, but it makes me miss the turkish restaurant in Naaldwijk downtown…

Salchipapa: the Colombian kapsalon

The next day (Wednesday 17.04.19), we returned in Cartagena, where we, of course, ate salchipapas for dinner. And we couldn’t just skip our bar where we buy our mojitos for $20k pesos.

That was the holiday in a comprehensed story. Nothing really happened afterwards until the birthday of King Willem Alexander; Kingsday! Damn, eating bitterballen, Dutch cheese, hema worst, loempias and sauseizen broodjes was too good to be true, after missing them for 4 months already. That, with a combination with a Dutch Heineken beer, made it a night to remember. Besides that, my neighbors from The Netherlands were in Bogotá for their holiday. Together with them, and Remco, we went to the Kingsday ‘borrel.’ Great to see your Dutch neighbors in Bogotá!

Remco, yo y Heineken: drinking in name of the king

 Let’s finalize this episode, but before that, I would like to introduce you to the person behind the name of ”Luis” that keeps coming back each episode. He is Mexican, he is quite the guy, he is funny as hell, he is in a bad taken picture, he is el Don of the Dons, he is…

…aguas aguas

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