A month in paradise

Finally, the end of August! If you’ve been following up ze blog, then you probably know that Vince and I decided to leave London for good (or at least that was the plan originally)… So we sold our stuff, gave back the keys from the flat, packed some very heavy boxes and said goodbye to our friends and the UK. V is at the moment spending some time with his family and friends in Italy while I’m spending some time with My Family and My Friends in Colombia. Heaven.

At first I thought that this was going to be ‘it’ for our relationship. The end. Finito. Caput! But actually being away has been good for us as he doesn’t need to deal with all my usual insanity, plus the extra one of getting used to live here once again. Also, I needed a break from pasta, and instead I’m having a very healthy diet based on fried pork belly and chorizo, which are our national favourites.

It has been a month already since we’re away, but still 10 days to go, can’t wait any longer. Sometimes I feel like I don’t even remember his face any more, and feel terrified of the idea of picking him up at the airport but kissing someone else instead, like ‘Oh sorry! I thought you were Vince, is just that you have a nose and a beard and so does he…’.

Look at all this doggies they look so happy, and so am I. Love you Cesar, and also the man that dubs his voice in Spanish.
But the biggest fear of all, has something to do with the fact that he loves missing his flights, like that time that we were going to have our first trip together and he missed the flight, or that time that he didn’t wake up on time… Every time I start thinking about it I get so stressed, that I must turn on the TV and watch as many episodes as possible of Dog Whisperer because Cesar Millan is the only person in the world able to calm dogs down and at the same time, me.

Forget citronella, forget tequila. This is a stress-free gold mine. I don’t have a dog, I don’t want a dog, but I could still watch this for days. Only his fans could understand the feeling.

My city decided to get way more interesting now that my boyfriend is not here yet, and get completely normal and boring by the time he arrives. Medellin in august had 10 ten days of nonstop party in the Flower Festival, then we had the Blue’s Festival, Scenic Arts Festival, The International Festival of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Medellin and soon the big reopening of the Modern Arts Museum (MAMM) which is also my beloved neighbour. If you want to see how my city looks like, I found for you a great quality video without all those weird and excited voices of the typical promotional videos here.

This month I have spent a lot of nights dancing my ass off with my friends, have also spent some time in our house in the country, picking up avocados and lemons and drinking coffee with my grandma while listening to her favourite tangos. Celebrated my birthday gypsy-style for more than a week just because, even if I come here every year, I didn’t manage to celebrate my birthday at home in eight long years. Been by the swimming pool every day taking a healthy dose of Vitamin D and have had a lot of quality chats with mom and dad, while eating ice cream and watching the sunset. Even if it sounds all very hippie… August, you’ve been awesome!

This is dad modeling his pjs fot the pic, picking lemons

12 Things you should know before dating a Colombian girl

When you think of Colombian women, you probably imagine some sun-kissed girls in bikini dancing salsa on the beach with fruits on their heads…. Wrong! Before dating a Colombian girl, you should know this:

  1. We love dancing

And by dancing we don’t mean salsa, but pretty much ANY rhythm. Play with a pair of spoons and we will dance it off awesomely.

A beautiful work of art by my beloved Fernando Botero
A beautiful work of art by my beloved Fernando Botero
   2.   Dancing doesn’t mean anything to us

We can dance with our uncle, our friend, our neighbour, our boyfriend, our mother, our girlfriends, or someone we just met. Dancing is not reserved to our partner, because is not a proof of love, but simply plain fun, so we can do it with anyone who can dance too. Deal with it!

     3.   We are not all equal

As someone from Miami couldn’t be compared with someone from Michigan, or someone from Newcastle shouldn’t be compared with someone from Cornwall, here in Colombia we are very different too. We have mountains, jungles, forests, big cities and coasts. We dress and eat different because even the weather in our cities is different. We don’t have the same character, so don’t patronise us, we are not all like Sofia Vergara.

      4.   What is spring?

We have no clue of what a season is. Our country is located near the Equator so we pretty much have some rainy days and some sunny days and that’s basically it. Don’t ask us to understand weather moodiness, changes of wardrobe or seasonal food. We just don’t know what that is…. Also, daylight here is the same all year round, so we can tell you what time it is, just by looking at the sun. Impressive, uh?

      5.   Politeness comes first

If we don’t tell you that your dog is ugly and fat is not because we are lying, those things are just not nice to say! So we just avoid unpleasant conversations, and pass on to talk about happy stuff. If you’re with a Colombian girl get used to say hello to everyone that crosses your path, like lifts, waiting areas or anywhere, that’s what politeness is all about…

      6.    Don’t ever give papaya.

Papaya as a fruit is a great gift, but ‘to give papaya’ in Colombia means to give someone an advantage over you, and remember if you give it, it will be taken!

7.    We have ‘Indigenous Malice’

Indigenous malice sounds really bad, but is how our grandparents used to call the awareness and smartness that they taught us, to be clever like our indigenous ancestors.

  8.    Many that you can’t even name

We love fruits, and we have thousands of them, thousands that you haven’t even heard of, like curuba, mamoncillo, tamarindo, zapote, guanábana, corozo, lulo among others, that you could try in ice cold juice but only if our mother likes you 😉

That's me holding a small guanabana, yum!
That’s me holding a small guanabana, yum!
   
     
      9.    And by the way…

Mothers are very important for us, actually our entire family. They thought us our values and love us unconditionally, so they have a very special place in our lives. Now, when we ask you to come and meet our family, be aware that family doesn’t only mean our parents, brothers and sisters, but also our grandparents, uncles, aunts and their uncles and aunts too, also our cousins and their kids, so you will end up meeting nothing less than 30 people, but don’t worry! they’ll  treat you like a lifelong friend….

     10.   Cold hands, warm heart

 If we come from a warm place, we can get to feel cold easily, but we use this saying to express that even if cold, we have a warm heart. We love sweet words, hugging and kissing. So our partner should be very loving and caring, otherwise you will be easily replaced by someone who really is.

11.   Lone rangers

Of course we love to be in a relationship and sharing time with others, but we ain’t going to die if we’re alone. We are independent women, we can cook, work, make money and fix our stuff at home, sure would be good to get some help, but things are going to get done anyhow.

A woman from Botero, love it!
A woman from Botero, love it!
12.   You can’t have it all

Colombian women are usually beautiful but short, but one thing makes up for the other… I guess.

And last but not least, is COLOMBIA, not Columbia!

‘You are seriously getting older’

Before living with my boyfriend, I had a lot of fun living with some friends, all of us were women, all of us crazier than a two-peckered billy goat, all of them older than me; so I remember like yesterday what they used to say on their birthdays when they were reaching the last years of their twenties.

– ‘I will start a diet and I will succeed this time!’

– ‘I will start exercising everyday so by the time I turn 30 I’ll look like Naomi Campbell’

– ‘No more junk food for me!’

– ‘I think it’s time to start using that expensive anti-ageing face cream that we saw at the mall…’

– ‘I’m too old for this crap. I’m going to quit my job and do something that I love… like painting…’

All of them said the same, no change ever really happened…

Last week it was my turn to hit one of those last birthdays before my thirties. It was my time to get depressed about my present, but optimistic about my future; and time for all those things that I should start doing now so I can consider myself a successful woman by the time I leave my beloved twenties, and the only way to get inspired, was by remembering my awesome friends and our usual talks, which were, when we weren’t trying to create new political, economical, fashion, social and educational policies or debate with history’s worse dictators and change the world from our kitchen, our talks were just about us and the things that confused us. So for my friends, those things were usually like:

‘How on God’s name did that ugly bitch get a loving boyfriend and I’m still single?’

‘How did I manage to eat everything I had in my fridge, I don’t fit into my clothes any more!’

‘OMG, look at my friends on Facebook, looks like I am the only one who isn’t married yet or pregnant’

‘I can’t earn this kind of money at work, I’m almost thirty! Bartenders earn more than I do’

‘Men are jerks. Screw them all!’

So after remembering these melodies and finding a fountain of inspiration for my new personal year’s resolutions I decided to evaluate my life.

First of all I don’t have a job. I don’t own a house..or a home. The best material stuff that I own, are my passport, my hair straightener, a Jew’s harp and my violin. At the moment I’m living in my mother’s place. I’m not married, or a mother. I’m not rich, or incredibly fit. I suck at sports and at singing. I fall asleep during movies. Most of my books are second hand. I don’t own a Mac, or a car or a tv.

If you have at least one of the above, you can feel happy and consider yourself a champ! If you have non of those things, like me, keep on reading…

I might not have any of those things, but I am really really happy, because my happiness doesn’t depend on those things (otherwise I would’ve shoot myself long time ago).

999479_10152332900821490_1412053083_n

I don’t have a job because I quit mine to go on a long holiday. I am living in my mother’s place because I am happy to stay with her while I’m visiting my country. I don’t have anything material except for passport and musical instruments, because I am moving to a different country and I don’t want to travel with heavy luggage. I don’t watch tv, I love driving but hate traffic, and the Mac? well, I own a ThinkPad.

I’m not married, or a mother because I chose not to be so, yet. I’m not incredibly fit because I love eating crap and believe it or not, laziness and yoga won’t make you a supermodel. Most of my books are second hand because I love recycling and it makes me feel like I’m contributing somehow to decrease the world’s level of rubbish and preventing those beautiful sea-turtles from getting stuck in it.

I’m not rich but I have travelled a lot and I’m lucky, very lucky. I have very good friends in a lot of cities around the world, and almost in every continent. I have a very loving family. I’m healthy and even if I can’t play sports or sing, I can dance off the whole night. I have the most amazing (and sometimes annoying) boyfriend in the world. And I am basically everything that I wanted to be because I’m young in my ways, and have curly hair and I’m incredibly happy!

To be honest I actually do feel older…too old for crap 😉 so I won’t stand things, places or people that I don’t like, and getting older made me understand that there’s no time to loose because there’s too many things left to be done, and I just don’t want to waste my time, but to spend it doing the things I love.

After meditating and finding these beautiful answers for my life, I still couldn’t fight the desire to get super hot and fit before I turn 30, so I went running to the swimming pool in order to swim 50 miles in one hour, but ended up playing with the bubbles and pretending to be a mermaid…

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Long ass distance relationships

Hello from Colombia! Right now I’m in the city of flowers and eternal spring. I don’t want to complain about the heat because I just arrived from IAmF*ckingColdEvenInTheSummer-London, but I wouldn’t be surprised if someone was able to fry an egg over the pavement, you get me? Is hot like hell.

Vince has left London as well, and is staying at his parents’ place in Naples for some weeks, until he flies to meet me and stay here for few more months. That’s the plan. I mean, we made plans only because we had to buy those expensive transatlantic flight tickets a little bit in advance, otherwise we wouldn’t have planned anything, because we hate planning. But planning was a good idea also as a warranty that we would see each other again…

When I took my flight I thought to myself ‘Awesome! now I am going to have a lot of time to spend by myself, alone with my family and friends, and we are going to make this relationship stronger by being away and find ourselves’….Bullshit! My long distance relationship has been more like this:

What is like to have a long distance relationship with a hysterical woman:

  • First of all, whenever we were apart for more than five days I was already starting to feel weird and grumpy, like ‘oh you have to compensate me for being your girlfriend’ attitude, which is very similar to the ‘look, I am using the pill, and sacrificing for you’ and other ‘while on my period’ attitudes. Luckily for me, my boyfriend has balls and nerves of steel and has an infinite patience with all my insane requests.
  • As a result of a list serious absurd traumas, I hate talking by phone and video conversations are not very different, so I don’t pick up most of the time and when I do, the calls finish after a minute: ‘Speak later, I have to do a…(hang up phone).
  • These are the reasons why our relationship is at the moment just a funny monkey.

1103654447167903697His name is Banana, and is a Facebook sticker, he is the only one that understands me and can show my partner how I really feel. And I feel like a primate. V says goodnight to me every night and wishes me a great day every morning, my answer is a big blue monkey wearing a Speedo’s or hanging from a tree,because that’s what love is all about for monkeys, isn’t it?

  • The most difficult thing about being away is that we are seven hours away from each other. By the time I wake up in the morning, he already had lunch; and he goes to bed when it’s still day time here, no time for sexy games, no romantic Skype dates, just time for blue monkeys. If you are looking at a bright full moon, I’m probably out with a hat covering from the sun, who would’ve thought that a ROUNDED WORLD would give me such a hard time.
  • If you ever wondered what is like to have a long distance relationship with an Italian man, you just need to check my received files folder to understand it: to have an Italian boyfriend in the distance equals getting tons of pictures of food everyday like pasta, pizza and sea food. Also pictures of him and his friends playing football on the Xbox…. But I can’t really complain, as the pictures that I share with him are full of grannies dancing with me in the Rumba fitness class, and also some videos of birdies singing and sunsets.
  • Having your partner away for long is not so much fun, specially now that I have met my friends and realised that they don’t have more stinky, embarrassing and weird stories than the ones they tell in front of him. Apparently they like him and they tell the crazy weird stories even in his presence.
  • And that flight ticket that he bought to come here, makes me so bloody nervous… Like, what if he misses the flight? Would we ever see each other again? V has missed flights several times! Or what if he decides to fly to Barbados instead? We are so far away… But deep down inside, I am sure he will come. BECAUSE I KIDNAPPED THE WII U 😉

Life with an Italian

Tom Hanks or travelling to Colombia

Thanks to a great travel agency I had my flight London-Madrid before midnight and a twelve-hours stop in Barajas, pff! But I must say that it wasn’t that bad: big shout out to Sleeping in Airports! Thanks to these awesome guys I had a great six hours sleep in Terminal 4 followed by a walk through the airport and some shopping, basically like Tom Hanks in a shorter version of The Terminal but with a valid passport, followed by a 10.5 hours flight over the Atlantic ocean.

How to sleep in an airport as a VIP #airport#night

A post shared by Mariana (@marianagira) on


I love airports and planes and flying, a lot, almost in a very freaky way, but I had watched Castaway with Tom Hanks a week before and just before I boarded the plane, my heart started pumping inside my mouth and I couldn’t breath any more. ‘What if the plane crashed down in open sea? what if I survived in a deserted island and no one ever found me? I should have learned to make fire out of wood…They should have taught me this in school, now I am going to die… Wilson!.

Remember this scene? where Tom Hanks figures out how to make fire. Bloody hilarious!!

Believe it or not this post is not about Tom Hanks, but his characters sure now how I felt that day!

Now, truth be told, there were more chances of me dying from a blood cloth in my legs than a plane crash, so I stretched every few hours and poured myself some wine until I saw those sexy ass mountains that let us know we had arrived home.

Then the sniffing cute little doggies, the bad ass security, my parents, the flowers, the joy of finally putting all my four bags in the car and driving to my place. London is over baby, no more tube strikes or driving on the left side: I will be waking up to the sound of wild parrots, drinking the best coffee in the world in the morning and will be drinking Aguardiente in the streets with my friends at night, and would even wear a poncho if it wasn’t so incredibly warm in here.

It’s good to be home!

About the blog

Hello! You are probably here because you have an Italian partner who is weird, or a partner from anywhere around the world who is weird, or because you are single and your life is weird…or just because you like pizza.

This blog is basically about all the things that come to a woman’s mind when their boyfriend buys 5Kg of pasta or talks about Maradona (Weird!). If you ever wondered what’s going though your girlfriend’s mind, then this blog might give you a hint. But this blog is simply for anyone who’s ever been in a relationship, and could feel identified with these stories, because hopefully you went through the same and yet, you can’t stop laughing of all the crazy things your partner does, like I do. (but maybe not just quite, because this is a highly storm-ish, paranoid and hysterical version).

I was born in Medellin, Colombia and no, we don’t all live in coffee plantations or in trees and have monkeys for pets and yes, we have internet and highways. My city is a wonderful place to live, surrounded by beautiful mountains and the shiniest metro I’ve ever seen. Since I was a kid I was always into arts, played the violin in a couple of orchestras and got involved in few plays at a local theatre called Hora 25 (make sure you visit it if you’re in town) and loved nature and travelling.

While in uni, decided to travel and study English abroad. Had been before to the US and loved roller coasters, but wasn’t too sure about living there. Australia? too far from home, same as South Africa…. so England! home of the Queen and tea with biscuits! Went to England and one thing led to another, I stayed there for a lot longer than previously planned. I lived the crazy London life until I met my Italian boyfriend and now, craze is the same but life has changed.

Life is not what one lived, but what one remembers and how one remembers it in order to recount it” GGM

A drive to Gatwick

I had finally finished packing. I had to buy an extra bag and still left out a lot of stuff: is hard to move to another place when you have so much crap.

There were a lot of things to do, left undone…whatever…

Me and V went to our neighbour Turkish restaurant and ate our last lunch there. My last lunch in London, actually my last meal in London, and pita bread with hummus and  tzatziki seemed to be just right. Went home after that, said goodbye to my flatmates and called a cab that never arrived, not very impressed! so decided to walk to the local minicabs with four bags, a terrible attitude and a confused boyfriend. We got there almost crawling and got a minicab to Gatwick for the exact amount of cash that I was carrying with me and prayed that cab didn’t smell of cat piss like the last time, but it was all fine. Put the bags in the trunk, gave my boyfriend the last kiss in months and left.

The cab driver looked like he had just arrived from Pakistan, I tried to chat to him but he smiled and replied “Me, little speak”. So I guess that was it, it was going to be a long trip by myself.

We had to go back a little bit to take the big road so we passed next to my flat, the flat where I had lived for more than a year, the first flat I lived with my boyfriend, the friends, the cat. Awesome memories. Then we went through my neighbourhood, there was a man taking some cabbages into my favourite Polish restaurant and the ladies by the window display of the Turkish cafeterias were baking the bread.

Then we passed through the park were I usually ran, and saw the kids, the birdies and the trees. All for the last time. We then moved east. I could see Hackney Wick and brought me all of these great memories from the summer job that had just ended, the people, the canal, the music….was so absorbed with my thoughts that didn’t notice we were going in the wrong direction.

-“Excuse me Sir, but Gatwick is down south and we are going east, soon in Essex!”

-“Me, little English”

-“Holy smoke, I am gonna have to trust you and shut down my brain so I don’t go nuts”

-“Good, good. Music?”

He turned on the radio on a station that plays same music as Heaven, a gay club on Monday nights, and he seemed to enjoy the music. At least one of us was happy.

He drove me then to a traffic jam, then to another, and another. So I put myself in meditation mode and decided to enjoy my last minutes in the UK. The sky looked incredible and I thanked the universe for that amazing experience: The traffic jam, the time to meditate, the clouds, the driver, the music, the time in London, the friends, the new adventure and my new awesome leather jacket.

We finally arrived after two hours in the car,it should have been one, but who cares? I was glad to be there finally. And there I was, with a 25 Kg luggage, a 21 Kg or the heaviest backpack in the world, a mini luggage, another bag on my shoulders that weighted the same as a stone basketball, a leather jacket on my hands, with a scarf, a cardigan and a coat (just because I didn’t have space to pack them and it was 25 degrees outside) and last but not least, my super hero purple travel pillow that transforms into a squared pillow too. I was just there, standing with no cash, and the gazillion bags: Putting all my money into my bank account before flying didn’t seem like a great idea in that moment!

So the driver came to save me, bless him! He took a pound coin from his pocket and got me a trolley. I thanked him with my life, what an awesome guy, no words needed…

With a full trolley and an hour delay, I finally got into the airport.

Colombia here I come!