Cartagena, Colombia is romantic, quaint, magical. With its narrow old-town streets, softly lit majestic night glow, and horse-drawn carriages; and she is breath-taking. She hosts her annual Feista de La Reina (Queen Festival) every year on 11-11. This past year it was even unearthly cool with the 11.11.11 thing going for it.
We’re walking the streets of Cartagena, on the way to another wild day and night of crazy foam spraying fights, omg delish food vendor stands, and hysterical dancing with the kids. Make-upped beautiful, half-naked, glittery men and women shaking their stuff in lovely rhythmic coordination. It’s moments like these, when you are in the highest of spirits, loving the feeling of being world travelers, lucky enough to experience all of these unreal, authentic international festivities; that you know, you know you are FREE!
And as we roam the streets one night, we are inspired by DeCapo- such a symbol of freedom, right here in the streets of Cartagena, Colombia. And so, in honor of the 4th of July…. when freedom rings.
(BONUS PHOTOGRAPH: THE MOST BEAUTIFUL WOMEN I’VE EVER SEEN)
The Streets of Cartagena.
I say that and sigh.
Our dearest friend and soul brother Alonso used to sing to us this song about “La Arena de Cartagena“, the sands of Cartagena. He’s from Bogota, Colombia; but we co-habitated with him in Lima, Peru for three month. Oh, god, I miss him bolting out the verses to this song on a crowded public bus, while everyone either stares or pretends to ignore the crazy guy in the back. And we, we would die laughing. He is such a riot, Alonso. Donde estas, hermano? (Where art tho brother?)
So, I’m really all over the place today. Focus, focus, focus. (It is hard when everything becomes a trigger to a precious memory. I’m just sayin….)
So, we are walking in the streets of Cartegena and festival fever is in the air. People are dressed up crazy, everyone’s in an all-day drunk and high sort of mood. Perfect strangers dancing and making out in the streets. Perfect strangers engaged in long-winded foam spray fights. Perfect strangers having a perfectly amazing time.
You see how fuzzy the picture is? Who gives a shit! It’s moments like this when you are laughing hysterically with your kids, when you invite them to to-the-death-foam-battles, when there is no bed time, when you are so alive; that you feel free. And freedom is what it’s all about right?
The freedom to roam and explore.
Freedom to act wild and crazy and stupid with your kids around.
(Seriously, how badly am I scarring them for overexposure to everything? Just a side thought).
Freedom to wake up whenever you do.
Freedom to act like you are in your twenties again.
Freedom to go where the wind takes you.
Freedom to dance and hoot and scream with the crowd.
(Ok, so I’ve basically said this five times. Are you getting it?)
Free to look ridiculous in your wig. (Girl, yo ponytail from the back look ridiculous!)
Free to eat without caring how many calories are in it.
Free to know that the next day, and the next day, and the next day you’ll keep partying.
Free to meander and talk to locals and tourists in the street.Fr
Free to drink up the tantalizing essence of your new favorite spot.
Freedom to listen to drums and trumpets all, all, all night long.
Freedom to get drunk in this unreal energy enveloping your soul.
Freedom to not think of anything else but the music you are going crazy to.
Freedom to not understand half of what your drunk neighbor is screaming into you right ear.
Freedom to fall in love with the perfect, perfect, perfect God-kissed beauty in the photo below.
Here she comes, the photograph I was talking about. She is stunning!!!!! As she is, with her hat, the foam, her shirt, that nose, those lips, that face…. ahhhhh. (I’ll stop)
We actually (well, Kobi) made this unreal, kick-ass movie of the festivities while we were still in Cartagena. I even put in the narration. And well, damn it….never mind. The movie’s gone with that hard drive. We’ve been computer-challenged in many ways this past a year and four months. May it, and the others, rest in peace. (You know if I was properly diagnosed, I would so need to overdose on retilin. Can I get through this blog post without shifting topics? Apparently not.)
So, we’re walking the streets and see someone clearly not Colombian. We chit chat and we quickly discover that this guy is quite amazing. His name is Mats Fagerström and he’s from Stockholm, Sweden. I quote from his website:
“I have been sailing for more than 40 years, made four Atlantic crossings and I have been living full time on Da Capo, mostly in the Caribbean since 1997.”
Very cool guy. And freedom. Listen how he defines happiness. True happiness and how freedom rings so true, it deafens.
I just thought you’d like to meet Mats, and DaCapo. You can read more about his adventures, his lovely DaCapo (means ‘encore’ in Italian), and his work in the Great Waters at his sailing site.
See it’s the Fourth of July. Some very cool people out in our tiny little globe have some very big ideas about what freedom mean. I like mine, the freedom to be and behave and go wherever I damn well please. I like his. Funny though, neither has anything to do going to super sales. Cool. I know.
And you, you are not off the hook. Share with me what does freedom mean to you? How has freedom as a traveler enriched your life? Don’t you agree that my straw-hat girl is unbelievably delicious? Come on, don’t you? What do you think of DeCapo and that unreal freedom of sailing the seven seas? Are you free? Can you become free?
KEEP READING. SURPRISES ARE NOT OVER YET!
We’re are so blessed to be a part of one amazing community of family bloggers. Many of us had a few things to say about freedom. I strongly suggest hopping over to their sites and be inspired by their take on freedom. Really, really good stuff:
Are we free? – Heather @ Living Differently
The Freedom to Choose – Living Outside of the Box
Freedom and straying off the beaten path – Barts Go Adventuring
Living a Free and Meaningful Life – Bethaney @ Flashpacker Family
Freedom to Roam – Diya @ A Minor Diversion
What is Freedom? – Nancy @ Family on Bikes
Do you know what Freedom is?- Mary @Bohemian Travelers
Free Falling – Melissa @ Break Out of Bushwick
Listen, we really want 500 Facebook likes by the end of this summer. Give us a hand. Tell the world we’re nice, tell them to subscribe to this Youtube channel, tell them to come join us for a month or two. Just tell them whatever the hell you want to, just bring us up in conversation, will you? Geezs!
we’d be honored to have you with us.