Posts Tagged With: Carlos

Where I Spend My Time!!

My friend Carlos, before moving to Australia, introduced me to Zoltan Bokor.  Zoltan owns Bokor’s Sandwich & Coffee Cafe at Calle 47 #14-23 in Bogotá, Colombia with his partner Diana Rodriguez.  This is a great little coffee shop because it offers something few businesses here in Bogotá offer – customer service!  It is only 2 blocks from my apartment so even on days my MS is active, I can can still make it there for a coffee.  The original goal of the visits was to just get out of the apartment a few  minutes of the day, but now Zoltan and I have become really good friends.  He is originally from Hungary but lived in England for a while.  He and I enjoy that we can speak in English and understand each other in the new Spanish-speaking culture we find ourselves living.  His partner does speak English, but she is still an “insider” in Bogotá.  Zoltan and I share the experience of adjusting to this new culture which is a unique bond.  So add a great new friends Zoltan and Diana with coffee (and some times beers) and sandwiches, it is a welcomed oasis for me.  I am kind of like Norm from the tv show “Cheers” because everyone knows my name there.  The regulars and I sometimes exchange quick English/Spanish lessons.  The coffee, sandwiches and beers are much less expensive than any coffee shop in the U.S. also adds to the charm for my poor ass!  It is rare in my experience to find a place here in Bogotá like Bokor’s Sandwich & Coffee Cafe.   Borkor’s does not rest on having good food, but stresses customer service and a friendly atmosphere.  It is typical here in Bogotá to have one, maybe two of the experiences but to have all three and to be owned by someone who makes friends with his customers and tries to get to know them is very rare.

Zaltan Bokor & Diana Rodriguez at the Sandwich Shop

The café is close to the Universidad Católica de Bogotá (the Catholic University of Bogotá) and has a steady flow of students, professors, school administrators as well as folks living in the neighborhood.  But like any place that severs beers, Bokor’s has become quite busy “After Class”!!  Some students skip the beers and just have a coffee and/or sandwich visiting with other students about their day.  Some discussion even appears deep and intellectual as if they are solving the issues of the world.  In the back of the café are a few computers for public use that for a small fee are used to surf the internet and WiFi is also available for the “real” American coffee shop experience so that I can pretend to be writing the next bestseller!!  lol.

For 2,200 Pesos ($1.10) Gets Anyone the Small Sandwich Combo

 

Even With Good Food, Good Friends, Mixed With Good Times.... I Have Been Able To Lose 25 Pounds (13kgs) In 2 Months

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Categories: Colombia, Life, Uncategorized | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

How I Get Along!!

Great roommates is my biggest asset being in a new city!  This past week my health kept me pretty much a shut in.  My roommates Marlon and Luis Fernando cooked several times and really took care of me!  Through my roommate I made a new friend – Carlos!  WOW!!  Carlos has been a trooper!  He has been my translator, guide and even has acted as my assistant!! lol  He has helped me so much in getting my Cedula (Colombian ID) so I will be able to get my health insurance here.  Carlos is heading to Australia next week and he will be missed!  I hope in Australia he can find great people like I have here in Colombia!

Categories: Life | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Big Changes = Big Rewards

There have been a few times when I took great risks and got great payoff. Anyone that knows me knows my wealth is in friendships! The risks I am most apt to take is moving.  While making these moves I have been enriched by meeting great people who also became great friends!  This list is in no way complete!

Bob, Laura & Me

My first big move was Atlanta. Laura was a girl with more crap hanging on the rear view mirror of her car than I had in my apartment! When I have found myself displaced, Laura and her family have welcomed me as a red-head step child. She explained to her fiancée that she knew the groom usually chose all the groomsmen, but that he had to choose me! lol You can not help but love Laura, she will give you the wire from her support bra! Her husband Bob and I have seen our friendship grow as we both would try to keep loving her even when she may make it difficult!! I am Godfather for her kids and I know she would be the first to give me lift when I find myself down! People may say, ‘You have to love Laura“, but I GET to love Laura and I am blessed for it!

Danny, Jay & Me

Moving to Las Vegas was an even bigger risk because my job relocated me, I would have never really thought of moving to Las Vegas. I had visited, but Vegas is a tourist town and I did not work in the hospitality industry, I worked for Sony. But the jackpot in Vegas was Jay & Danny. Thanks to Jay & Danny I made many very good friends in Vegas. My birthday is December 30 and few people notice for more than a Happy Birthday on MySpace or Facebook, but Jay & Danny made all of my birthdays in Las Vegas special. They invited me to be a part of any celebration they participated in.  Jay & Danny are just that way and may not even realize how much all they did (and do) meant (and means) to me. Jay more than several times used his nursing skills and knowledge to help me when my Multiple Sclerosis was kicking my ass.  Even as I adventure to live in Colombia, they are the pressure to learn Spanish more so than even my Colombian friends! Danny is the first to give honest and constructive criticism of my writing. He knows writing is only a pipe dream for me, but his support encourages me to try like it is possible.

Jo Anna & Me

In Mississippi I have a few friends still there, but my Jo Anna is the rarest of breeds!  She is the friend that not only listens… but she understands.  She knows what I mean.  From introducing me to La Mariposa Mercedes Cafe and 2 for 1 Margaritas on Thursday with the a Colombian owner Mercedes who can only be described as a character to letting me steal some high-speed internet to keep my sanity in dial-up hell!!  There a few (if any) things I have to keep from her!  When something happens and I am excited to tell someone… Jo Anna gets the first call! She almost had a move to Las Vegas and now I have to work on her to consider Bogotá!!  She would be the best girl to enjoy and experience Colombia with because we would be so bad together while having so much fun!!  Knowing my birthday falls at a crappy time of year Jo did her part to make my birthday special.  Plus, Jo Anna is the sweetest person I know… she even beats out Jay!! haha  She even “gets” why Colombia!

Marlon, Carlos & Me

Speaking of Colombia, my ex turned out to be a big flake and my friend Andres introduced me to my now roommate Marlon.  What a Godsend Marlon was and is!  In turn he introduced me to his friend Carlos.  These two guys have done so much to make my adjustment to Bogotá a success!  Marlon ran all over town with me when I was apartment hunting and even entertained me a time or two with beers at the local watering holes all while acting as my translator!  Once the apartment was found… I was out of the country with my return delayed as I stayed to spend more time with family during the holidays, and Marlon picked up the keys for the apartment and got it all in working order so when I did return…. everything was working.  Marlon even cooks large quantities and when my MS is active… his meals can soothe the soul even better than homemade chicken soup!  With his busy work schedule, his friend Carlos stepped in as tour guide and translator.  Any new city has challenges.. new doctors, new dentist, where to get my hair cut, how to use public transportation and best of all where the outlet Malls are and thanks to Carlos not only do I know where and how to find them…. I also made a great friend in the process!  But the two of them do not know that as they were with me all over Bogotá, they were also protecting me.  These 2 guys also welcomed me with a birthday surprise that not since Jay & Danny have friends done so much for my birthday (read about that in the post “Welcome to Bogotá” below)!  My MS would have limited me from learning and knowing all I do about Bogotá, just by being with me, I knew if my legs, vision or anything related to my MS effected me… they were there to help!  Alone… I would not have been able to make moving to Bogotá a success; but the amazing thing is…. neither of these guys thinks they really did much to help, but they did and humble or not…. I thank them!

So many others have helped in all the places I have lived, but these I feel need a special mention!  These places have become home because of their help, love and support.  I can never do for them as much as they have done for me and I only hope they can begin to know how much I appreciate all they have done for me!  Love all of you!! Laura, Jay, Danny, Jo Anna, Marlon and Carlos being a part of my life is my great REWARD!

Categories: Life, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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