All of this information is based on personal experiences. The authors accept no responsibility for the accuracy of this information, nor for any damages caused by using this information. Things change, so it's always a good idea to check with the relevant authorities first. If you'd like to comment on the content of any of these articles, please email the author.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Colombia signs up for XO laptop

From the BBC website:

About 65,000 children in the Caldas region of Colombia will soon be getting an XO laptop.

It has signed up to the One Laptop Per Child programme which puts cheap PCs into the hands of schoolchildren.

Read more

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Escopetarra: Instrument of peace

"The Gun Guitar"...
This has been getting a lot of press lately. Fantastic.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Ethical jewellery good as gold

"Customers don't realise that one wedding ring weighs 10 grams and causes three tonnes of toxic waste," says Greg Valerio, whose company aims to follow fair trade coffee with ethical gold jewellery.

His jewellery shop in the southern English city of Chichester has formed a partnership with miners in a cooperative in Choco, an underdeveloped region in northeast Colombia, called the Green Gold ("Oro Verde") project.

Read the full article here.

(c) Reuters

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Colombia's Under-17 Women's football team - South American champions - Classified for the World Cup in New Zealand

Hopefully the New Zealand based Colombian community will organise some sort of support base.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Sir Edmund Hillary: 1919-2008

One of my biggest heroes, Sir Edmund Hillary, passed away today.

Quite often in class, I would ask my students to talk about a personal hero, and when the students would ask me about my personal hero, I would tell them about Sir Ed, and the work he did in Nepal, after becoming famous.

I'm overwhelmed by the coverage Sir Ed's passing is getting worldwide, including being the top story not only in New Zealand, but also on the BBC and CNN, as well as in Australian media.

Even the Colombian media are featuring it pretty highly on their news websites, despite it coinciding with the release of Clara Rojas y Consuelo González by the FARC.

Canal Caracol has it featured on it's homepage, as a sports story:

El Tiempo also features the story on it's homepage, being the third top story, after to major local stories:

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Monday, December 10, 2007

Bogota is ranked 21 on a list of 53 destinations recommended to visit in 2008

From ElTiempo.com (In Spanish)

A new hot-spot for the tourism industry

After 27 years of total stagnation, tourism is starting to flourish in Colombia again.

Another really positive story about Colombia from the BBC.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

The original "Ugly Betty"

I'm not a fan at all of the US version of "Ugly Betty", and to be honest, it took me a while to "get" the original version (From Colombia).

I've just spotted this article on the BBC news website, about the original series, written when it was first aired.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Colombian hostage's kids campaign in Europe to save mother

Although this is not positive news about Colombia, I think that this is a very well written, balanced and well researched article. It appears that the journalist actually looked for an angle and did some research, rather than do a bit of 'cut-and-paste' journalism, which is so common nowadays.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Seeking Garcia Marquez magic in Colombia

Here's a lovely story about Colombia, on the BBC website.


Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Thank you, my friend.

Sometimes I hate the internet, especially as a means of communication.

Since being back in New Zealand, I hadn't been in contact with the family who ran "Plays Cool Foundation", where I was helping to develop English teaching resources for public schools in Bogotá. I had sent them a few emails, but recently they had been bounced back, as the account was inactive.

I hoped that I would be able to find their contact details on the internet, so I did a Google search for them.

To my dismay, the only reference I found was a death notice for my friend. It was in the magazine of his former workplace, and was complete with photograph, so I knew it was him.

My heart goes out to his wife, Liliana, who I worked a lot with, and their kids, Laura and Daniel, who I loved chatting and playing with.

Eduardo Alberto Bernal Rengifo: 1970-2007, May you rest in peace, my friend.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Crap public transport

Getting around Bogotá can be complicated, cramped buses, buses never arriving on time, buses not stopping to pick up or set down passengers, overcrowded Transmilenio, ripoff taxis etc... but today tested my patience...

Normally my bus comes every 30 minutes... I expect it to be late, due to peak hour traffic, but I waited over one and a half hours today! Added to the generally crap day I had at work, I was in a pretty foul mood when a usable bus came along... not my usual, but one that would leave me within eight kilometres of home, where I could catch another bus to get home...

Now, in Bogotá, I sort of came accustomed to these sorts of delays, but not in my hometown of Wellington, New Zealand.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Adios Colombia, y gracias

I'm leaving Colombia tomorrow, and going back to New Zealand...

I'm sad to leave, but I know that it's time to go. I hope to return within the next few years, however.

over the next few months, I'll be posting some of my thoughts and observations about my fourth trip to Colombia.