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Most users ever online was 14 on Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:58 am

A Gringa in Bogotá

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A Gringa in Bogotá

Post by Nicole on Thu Oct 04, 2012 4:58 am

Hey Anita,

last week I starting read the Book "A Gringa in Bogotá" again. I think it is a really good book. I think a lot about the topic and the descriptions in the book.
Anita, José and GrumpyElf do you feels the invisible or the visible war in your life. When yes in which situations do you feel it?

Best wishes
Nicole

(Anita this time I start read this book, I understand it better but I don't know why.)

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Re: A Gringa in Bogotá

Post by Anita on Thu Oct 04, 2012 10:33 pm

Hug Hey, my dear Nicole! Hi

Yay! I'm so happy you started reading this book!!
To contextualise: A Gringa in Bogota is a book written by June Carolyn Erlick, an American journalist who lived in Colombia in the half part of the 70s and came back about seven years ago, and could see with her own eyes not only the changes the city has gone through, but also the different ways in which we, Colombians, experience an invisible war as Nicole has mentioned. In other words, how the well-known culture of violence and survival affects our everyday lives.
The book is great because it gets into the everyday lives and situations of we as Bogota dwellers, its cool things and its downsides, and it goes further than the typical though of drugs and violence. Because we know Colombia is more than that!

OK, back to the thread. Razz I think one of the cases in which deal with an invisible war has to do with space management, from lands and housing to public space. As I said before, the Latin American culture and the Colombian culture has to do specifically with survival, and you see it reflected in how we defend our space, always ready in case another person invades. That's one of the things that makes getting on TransMilenio chaotic nowadays: opposite to other countries, there is no sense of distance. However, despite this 'nearness', our attitude is defensive. This defensive attitude and lack of trust usually happens to public servers and among ourselves. You'll hardly ever see we're defensive when we're with foreigners. That's why I think Mrs Erlick was lucky!

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Re: A Gringa in Bogotá

Post by Nicole on Fri Oct 05, 2012 5:25 am

Hey Anita,

thank you for the book review because I forgett it. Embarassed

Thank you for sharing your experience with the invisible war. You once told me that you don't go out in the night. Is that a result from the invisible war ?

I can't understand (I'm not sure about the word understand because in Germany we have the word "nachvollziehen") the situation about the feeling from Bogota dewellers in detail because in germany we don't have a invisible war. I talked with my Grandmother about this and about her experience from the second world war. In this time she was a child and she told me a lot about her life in this time. Here father died in the second war when she was nine years old by a bomb attack.

So I'm curios about your experience and what you think. Do you think there is a solution that the war can end?

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Re: A Gringa in Bogotá

Post by Anita on Sat Oct 06, 2012 9:12 am

Well, I don't know whether you've heard the news about Colombia's peace negotiations with one of the guerrilla groups which is about to set off on October 17th - if they don't change the date again. The idea is to reach a deal to stop narcotraffic, violence against civilians, kidnapping and extortion. Shame, however, to see that this war is actually god business for both the guerrilla and the government. Who would ever want to give up something which actually benefiting them despite affecting the rest of the country?

I say they are benefiting from this war because of this: the guerrilla lives on drug dealing, weapon trades and extortion. They would barely want to leave the goose that lays the golden eggs.

On the other hand, if the government's most significant expenditure is war hardware and the army staff, I'm not sure they want to give up on such income. And let's talk turkey, I'm afraid corruption is the main illness our country's got, and it starts from the gov itself.

Citizens can make a change with a long-term yet progressive change of mind about how we can act towards others. Once we stop being so selfish and acknowledge global welfare as a need, that when we can start battling indifference and selfishness in a practical way: helping others whenever we need it, being patient and tolerant, not feeding hate, being honest even when nobody's looking at us, and watching over out thoughts and words. It begins in the family and our neighbourhood.

Social welfare means peace, but we don't have to wait on our government to reach that peace. We can start by ourselves in our everyday life!!

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