After three years of living in Bogota, life has a sense of normalcy. I know where to shop, how to get around, I can speak easily with my neighbors and people at church, and sometimes I forget I am living in a “foreign country”. Then every once in a while I step back and realize… somethings here in Bogota are just strange.
For example- grocery shopping. When we go to the bigger supermarkets, I sometimes forget that I’m not in the States. There are aisles with orderly rows of food and household items. I push a shopping cart and can scan barcodes at handy little price checking machines. But then, as I go down an aisle it becomes a real life game of frogger. One family has decided to stop mid-aisle to contemplate the price of rice while another mom is chasing her child away from the candy. Defensive cart pushing is real and incredibly funny when you step back and watch the chaos.
Now lining up to pay for groceries is also a “normal” experience. Many stores have adopted the one line system where everyone stands in one line and the first person always goes to the empty check stand. It takes away the guessing game of the “fast line” and really is more efficient. Until you are in line and realize the person behind you is RIGHT behind you. Like if you take a breath in you are going to bump them behind you. There is no way any person is going to cut between you and the person behind you! When this happens I have to take a deep breath (and hope not to bump them) and remember that personal space is clearly defined differently here in Bogota.
In the same time that life seems normal, I realize that living and working in a missionary community allows me to live a life that is different. Conversations about student’s hearts are a daily occurrence. Prayer is the go-to medium for solving problems (most of the time). Grace is extended when mistakes are made and communication becomes cloudy. I feel so blessed to live and work with a group of people that don’t mind cultural differences and embrace God’s cultural similarities.
As we move onward towards the Christmas season (which started the day after Halloween here) I am excited to celebrated with family- both literally and figuratively (my parents will be here in 10 days!!!). I am excited to share the warmness of Jesus coming to earth with my PKers and help them see that God has an amazing plan for this world. I am excited for the various parties and celebrations with co-workers and church family. And I am eager to dive into the word of God and be in awe of His work.
So as normal life turns into festive life I am looking forward to a worshipful life.
On a slightly different note… here are some pictures of Christmas entering Colombia…
|Welcome tree at our school|
|Christmas is arriving in Cartagena too!|
|A PK sized tree|