February 18, 2013
I arrived at the Colombian Consulate at 6:30, nervous and full of anticipation. After freezing my ass off for an hour and a half we were let in, it paid off though cause I was second in line, or something like that. When my turn came I handed over the packet of papers and was directed to the head honchos office. There he asked me a few questions about my entry and commented on how small my salary was while I assured him that it was my higher calling in life to live off that crappy income. He apparently believed me because he told me to obtain a few additional papers, go pay a $50 dollar fee and come back and see the wizard in three days. Then it got crazy…
Went to the wrong bank….after a lot of pointing and attempts to communicate in my crappy Spanish I found the right bank only to discover that I had to pay in dollars. That was when I met the good Syrian. Much like the good Samaritan of the bible he came through for me and helped me come up with the last $2 dollars I needed to pay the fee having exhausted my previous supply. And I was able to repay the favor by helping him navigate his e-mail account to print off some papers he needed for a similar transaction at the same consulate.
I discovered during my transaction that he is in the import business. He set me straight on where to go when I get back to Pereira to buy the best north African dates in the world, all natural! With our business at the consulate successfully competed I shared a taxi with him and his prospective employee to the border where I exchanged pesos for more dollars and bid him thanks in Arabic. Which goes to show that no matter what the nationality, religious beliefs or quality of the medjool dates, good people come in all forms and you should always keep an open mind.
February 18, 2013