Medellín for the holidays 

We came back to Medellín on Christmas Eve, a day that people celebrate by getting pigs drunk and then chasing them around the neighborhood before slaughtering them to roast outside. We arrived too late to participate in this ceremony, but the music, drinking and dancing went on all night. We walked around Lenin’s neighborhood for a while, visiting his friends and family.

Meet Churro, a happy and curious mutt who loves to play, run, and eat meat

​The next day, while walking to the market to get vegetables, I noticed a dog staring out the window of a veterinarian shop. On the way back from the market, I pointed him out to Lenin. We went inside to say hi, and four or five other dogs came to greet us. The one puppy who was most friendly with me was a mutt that they had rescued from the street, and the man told us he was free for adoption. We stayed and played with all the dogs for a long time, but in the end, I couldn’t leave without this puppy. The man in the shop gave us a leash, harness, two toys and a bag of dog food, and we left with our new dog.

Churro is much faster than me at hiking, and this is only his first hike!

​We named him Churro, and we immediately fell in love with him. He was quiet, smart, easy going and affectionate. He was only about 5 months old and had innocent eyes and big ears. Churro was very motivated by food and easy to train. Within the first week, we had taught him to sit, give his paw, roll over and jump.

Not only was Churro a fast learner, but he was athletic as well. He loved to run, and he was fast. We took him up to Tres Cruces and down again in record time. Our grandest adventure was a hike from La Sierra in Medellín up to Pan de Azucar and on to Parque Arví, where Churro discovered swimming for the first time. Every new experience for this puppy was a joy to watch.

After a week of taking Churro on adventures within and around Medellín, we were itching to get back on our bikes and explore more of Colombia with him. Lenin’s brother, Edwin, had a bike trailer that he had bought in the US to take his daughter biking, but he never used it. It took a few asks, but eventually he agreed to sell it to us. The day after New Year’s Day, we set off on an indefinite journey to ride our bikes with Churro around Colombia.

About Sarah

Sarah grew up in Cranston - just south of Providence, Rhode Island - and developed a love for travel, music, and outdoor sports at an early age. She had started bicycling long distances at age 12, as a participant of the MS150 bike tours to raise money for the MS Society. She didn't use her bike regularly until she built her own while studying in Montreal and found it an excellent way to get around the city. After graduating from McGill and moving back to Providence, Sarah started working at Brown University's office of Environmental Health & Safety as the Biological Safety Specialist. She was living 4 miles away at the time, and for the first few weeks was driving to work. She made the switch from driving to bicycling when she realized that she could get to work faster, avoid parking tickets, and integrate a few miles of training into her day. Bicycling was better for the environment and better for her own health and mood. She found that she had more energy and felt much happier once she started biking to work. When her car broke down several months later, she never bothered replacing it. After 4 years of working in Biosafety (and on her master's in Environmental Studies), Sarah left her job to pursue her passion. She has been working various jobs in the bicycle industry since June of 2011, including pedicab driver, bicycle tour guide, bike mechanic and traveling bicycle advocate. In between seasonal jobs, she has done a few long-distance bike tours, which is the main reason for this blog. Her dream is to eventually ride around the world and sail across the oceans.

Posted on 13 March 2017, in Colombia, The space between. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Medellín for the holidays .

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