10 May 2011

Going Home

Well, after 18 years it’s happening. I am going home again. Home to Medellín, La Ciudad de La Eterna Primavera (the City of Eternal Spring): home to former drug cartels, civil war and kidnappings, but also home to one of the most welcoming, beautiful and bio-diverse little corners of the world.
More importantly, it’s home to my family.
The Misadventures might lead a reader to believe I have a rather tenuous grasp on family traditions and the fine moral fiber of my Catholic Aunties, but their influence does show itself here and there.
My eighty-something, Tia (auntie) Ligia, still runs her own business, and has never been seen in public in anything less than full make-up, heels, and not one silver-white hair on her head out of place. In fact, I don’t think anyone at home has seen her looking less than perfect. My mom has childhood memories of being woken at 7am by the clack-clack-clacking of Tia Ligia’s heels in the corridor.
Ligia’s sister, Tia Olga, is the firebrand; the Auntie Mame type. She still dyes her hair red, works 5 days a weeks, then jaunts off to her boyfriend’s country house every weekend.
Then there’s the other Auntie, Estella. Within the family we call her “La Monja Voladora” (the Flying Nun). She was secretary to the head nun (no idea what she’d actually be called) at the Vatican for many years. I have fond memories of chatting with her as a child--- she was one of the few polyglots I knew. We’d chat in Spanish, English, French and Italian, while studiously trying to avoid the subject of religion.

What does one say after 18 years? To family one has never even met?

I’m also showing up making a pretty bold statement. Here’s a boy: my Butterfly Boy. In a country where most women my age are married and have children, the family has been curious about me, to say the least. To them, I’m a hippie. I have not followed the expected path and they have no idea what to make of me and my “bohemian” ways.
They’ve heard stories throughout the years, but they stopped trying to keep up with the ever-changing list of boyfriends years ago. Now I’m bringing BB. Not just a guy, but the guy.

I’m sure they’ll be relieved!

Well, the time nears to board our plane. Upon our arrival in Colombia I’ll be seeing my biological father, who I most commonly refer to as “The Sperm Donor” or “The Donor” for short.
It should be interesting.
I was raised by a wonderful man: my father, The Donor’s one-time best friend. But the donor and I do share DNA, and by all counts, very similar personalities.

Stay tuned for updates of our travels, reunions, and Misadventures abroad!


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