Sunday, March 13, 2011

How Old?!

In all the countries I’ve lived and traveled to I’ve become accustomed to a variety of different styles and fashions. Some of these I reject wholeheartedly: whitening cream; some I give into through lack of alternatives: anti-wrinkle deodorant; and some I choose to imitate: straight, black hair. However, I must admit to finding a current trend in MedellĂ­n to be one of the strangest I have yet encountered.

Older women want to appear younger than they actually are. Okay, okay, not that unusual. And younger women want to appear older? Seriously, the fashionable hairstyle among the twenty-somethings is gray streaks! At first I thought they were colored streaks that had faded out, but the phenomenon is so wide-spread that I have no choice but to believe that these girls actually want gray hair. The only reasonable conclusion I can draw is that, in an attempt to differentiate themselves from and rebel against their mothers’ generation, young women are left with no other option than to adopt an older look.

So the reason 20 year-olds must style themselves as old ladies may be because the older ladies have styled themselves as 20 year-olds. They wear the exact same clothing and their hair is long, streaked light brown and blonde, and flipped out in a Farah Fawcett manner. Add to the mix the incredible bodies that Colombians are known for and you’ll understand why, from behind at least, I have mistaken more than one 17 year-old’s mom for his girlfriend. I think this is one fashion trend I will have to give a miss!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


After 24 hours of searching and worrying, Miles made the prescient statement: “It’s like someone just took her!” He was referring to our 7 month-old kitten Bowie who disappeared from the front of the hostel on Saturday night. Two days later, after plastering the neighborhood with signs that unintentionally looked like old western WANTED! posters, we got the longed for call. Bowie was safe and sound two blocks away.

Apparently these neighbors had seen Bowie on the street, noticed that none of the businesses were open and nobody was up in the houses, figured she was a stray, and adopted her. Hm. I’m so thankful that they called and returned her that I will only state very briefly how odd it is that they did not notice the brightly lit hostel with an open door and music playing from the bar less than 10 yards from where they found Bowie.

It’s fitting that when we went to collect Bowie, the first thing they said was “Your cat is CRAZY!” There’s a reason we were this close to calling her “Loca.” Truth is, Bowie is up in our business ALL the time. She attacks the laundry as I hang and fold it, races under the sheets as I make the bed, sits on the sink while I do the dishes, rolls in the dust as I sweep, drapes herself across my shoulders while I study Spanish, stages surprise attacks from around corners, and nibbles on our feet while we sleep. Needless to say, the apartment felt completely empty without her and I suppose I can forgive her the next few scratches. Welcome home, Bowie!