Stop it Bogota, you’re making me homesick

Mildura sunrise
I’m thinking about home

The past week in Bogota can only be described as glorious. The skies are blue from the mountains in the east stretching out west across the sheet plains of La Sabana. The weather is warm, a little too warm to fall into Bogota’s usual weather cycle.

 

When you step outside into the bright day, the warm air clings to you, offering up a gentle caress that you know could soon turn to a Chinese burn. At 2600m the sun has the same strength as in my land under the hole in the ozone. Slip, slop, slap.

This wave of homesickness hits me as I think of my hometown. It’s summertime there now. The temperatures there are pushing 40 degrees Celsius, but this unusual heat in Bogota, which is really only about 25 degrees, takes me to an Australian summer.

I can smell the sausages sizzling on the barbecue and feel the contrast against the tossed salad, cold from being in the fridge. I relax into the heat and see sunlight sparkling on the river where I’m waiting with my toes in the sand for my turn to waterski. I flinch as I feel the spray from the misters at the beer garden touch my hot skin. I can feel the delight as a cold bubble of water floats downstream, breaking up the warm surface water. I’m squatting beside the road by a tar patch with tiny bubbles on the surface and I can smell the tar as I pop the bubbles with my fingertip. I get sleepy as I sink into the carseat, the hot, trapped air lulling me into slumber.

But here I am, just basking in this glorious weather. Breathing in the lightness of the air that reminds me of holidays, and a slower pace of doing things.

The news talks about this strange weather, that bakes us during the day, and then in neighbouring farm towns just 40km away how it frosts the pastures with minus 3 degrees at night. It’s part of El Nino they say.

My phone tells me it’s cloudy and 5 degrees Celsius, but then again, I never look at or believe the weather prognostications here and at least another 20 degrees needs to be added to even be in the same ballpark as what’s outside my building right now.

This weather has taken me on a nostalgic journey back home. Usually I’m used to the weather nostalgia in name only as Bogota’s predictable four seasons in one day (twice over) is in line with Melbourne’s fame for having four seasons in one day. But now I’m reliving summers of my hometown, and desperate to cling to this sensation.

While this nostalgia brings me a certain sadness, the perfect weather is giving me an energy that was absent. I wake up with a smile and open myself wide to embrace what I’m sure will be a great day.

Living in the Land of “No Seasons”

A case of the sun is always sunnier on the other side

Most people I know dream of chasing the sun and living in a perpetual summer. Well here I am so my life must be sweet as, right?

Unfortunately the reality isn’t quite as glamorous. The idyllic relaxed attitudes and lifestyles you encounter on a tropical holiday, are really a by-product of living a life without change. That is to say we are all more relaxed and laid-back when summer and it’s long evenings with barbecues and drinks by the pool rolls around.

I’m sure there is a tropical relative of the SADs (which is when you don’t get enough sun because of a dark and grey winter) that sends you round the bend from too much sun, day in day out (not to be confused with sunburn). I hope I don’t catch it and go troppo, which, incidentally, is the name of the Stu Lloyd book I am currently reading.

This is a great piece of blogging by a ‘neighbour’ of mine (well, we’ve never met but she’s a fellow expat who lives in the next city, which to me is good enough to warrant the title) at Transatlantic Adventure all about living in the land of no seasons. She sums it all up excellently, have a read.

Transatlantic Adventure

This is the second time I’ve lived in Colombia. The second time I’ve lived in a world of “no seasons.” Because of Colombia’s latitude and longitude (in other words–it’s closeness to the equator) there is VERY little, if any, change in temperature throughout the year. Yes, there are all sorts of temperatures to be found in Colombia from the freezing peaks of la Sierra Nevada to the boiling temperatures of la Guajira and the rainforest humidity found in Leiticia to the temperate, Spring-like temperatures of Medellín, and the somewhat cooler zones of Boyacá and Cundinamarca. In fact, Colombia has so many climate zones that it is the most bio-diverse country in the world!

Valle de Cocora, Salento

Now, that being said, the temperature in a specific place doesn’t really change. In other words, in Bogotá the temperature during the day generally falls in the 60s (Farenheit) and in Barranquilla in the 90s  (Farenheit)…

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