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Old 01-13-2019, 12:46 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 4 days ago)
 
5,251 posts, read 8,053,187 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Astral_Weeks View Post
I just got back from one week in Medellin. Everything went very smoothly.

That said, nobody should be under the illusion that they are visiting Disneyland. I never meant to make that impression. Also, I know conversational Spanish which helps a lot. I wouldn't recommend someone to travel there alone who does not have some decent Spanish. Again, I am conversational but definitely NOT fluent.

As for the accuracy of the stats, I would argue that homicides are among the most accurate crime stats you can find. And there is no doubt Medellin has vastly and I mean VASTLY improved since the 90's.

Cali has a far higher homicide rate than Medellin. I was in Cali for 6 nights in 2018. I traveled solo. Did my research. Stayed in the nice parts of town. I had no security issues. Granted, people should always travel with pre-caution and don't do stupid stuff.

There was a program on Vice called the "Devils' Breath" or "the world's most dangerous drug" which is scary as hell. It is about the use of Scopomaline in Colombia. Definitely got to be careful but with proper research/precaution I would NOT let it stop me from going.
The reason it went well for you is because despite the higher probability of being the target of a crime, its still much lower than the media makes people think. Most people are not that great with math and probability is often misunderstood.

The people with the highest risks of being victims of any crime are always (in this order): people in the drug business, people that walk in the wrong side of the tracks, everyday people that live in the worse areas of those cities, and people that live in the rest of the city. The probability of being a target drops tremendously with every group in that order. Far at the end are long term visitors and in the last place are short term visitors (a visit that lasts up to a week or two).

It doesn’t matter the place, the vast majority of people that are victims of crime are residents of those cities. I’ll be surprised if even a 2% of tourists visiting a dangerous city become victims of crime. The odds are simply against that by a long shot and this is in a dangerous city, imagine what the risks are in a safer city.

To put it another way, any given tourist has a higher chance of getting injured in a motor vehicular accident during their stay than by some bad luck with criminals. A person shouldn’t visit a place and be careless, but you shouldn’t be paranoid either.
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Old 01-13-2019, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
5,888 posts, read 9,505,258 times
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Hey PuebloFuerte, you've probably been to Spain a bunch ... Is it just me, or do the people in the towns along the Spanish Mediterranean coast remind you very much of Colombians - their physical appearance, mannerisms, way of talking, etc...? I was there a couple years ago and I was looking around at these people and I said geez, these people look and act exactly like people in Genoa or Sonson. Last year I was visiting a friend in Valencia and was suprised to see a cabalgata identical to how they do it in colombia. Not just any old cabalgata, but *exactly* the same, down to a tee.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AntonioR View Post
...
Well written post. Right on the money.
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Old 01-13-2019, 01:37 PM
 
Location: London, UK
2,876 posts, read 1,556,332 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 80skeys View Post
Hey PuebloFuerte, you've probably been to Spain a bunch ... Is it just me, or do the people in the towns along the Spanish Mediterranean coast remind you very much of Colombians - their physical appearance, mannerisms, way of talking, etc...? I was there a couple years ago and I was looking around at these people and I said geez, these people look and act exactly like people in Genoa or Sonson. Last year I was visiting a friend in Valencia and was suprised to see a cabalgata identical to how they do it in colombia. Not just any old cabalgata, but *exactly* the same, down to a tee.
I think its just you. Lol. Then again I haven't been lucky enough to see a cabalgata in Valencia. Although of course there are similarities I think Spanish people (especially around Valencia) are quite abrupt to the point of rude but its just their way. They love to curse, I love it when they say "go get F****ed by a fish", it's hysterical! Colombians are far more polite, gentle and well spoken in general.

People from Andalucia do have a more friendly disposition, I get on better with them. In the David Bisbal song with Greicy, you can see that Greicy despite being from Cali fulfils the role of an Andalucian woman perfectly.

I know there is a strong Basque presence in the Paisa region, the rest of Colombia though has too much Native American and African flavour for it to feel/look like Spain.

Basque heritage in Medellin...

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Old 01-13-2019, 02:28 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
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Originally Posted by 80skeys View Post
This entirely depends on where you stay and where you hang out. You can go to Spain and you can walk around anywhere in Madrid at 12am with little to no chance of being a victim, but there's a lot of neighborhoods in Medellin where you cannot do this.
Agreed, that is why I said research ahead of time and stay in the nice parts of town. I like El Poblado and Laureles.
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Old 01-14-2019, 05:30 AM
 
Location: London, UK
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Originally Posted by UrbanLuis View Post
^^ Colombia never ceases to amaze me. I didn't make it down last year, hopefully this year we will go.
The Kogui are Latin America's answer to Tibetan monks except even more isolated. Fascinating indeed.

Be careful of expectations though. When I was younger I trekked to a smaller archaeological site (pueblito) with the idea that I was going to become chummy with the Kogui people there. That they would appreciate some sort of encounter with a "conscientious younger brother". I was wrong, they didn't want to know, they want nothing to do with us because we're destroying the planet and have encroached on their habitat. I was so disappointed! Now that I'm older I understand, we younger brothers are greedy and self obsessed, what value is a little kid after one more "travel experience" to notch to his belt going to give them after all the pain they've endured and continued to endure? Thank God Instagram didn't exist back then otherwise I would be instagramming away.

I'm grateful for such a unique and ancient culture on our planet even if they want nothing to do with me.
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Old 01-14-2019, 07:11 AM
 
Location: London, UK
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A culture that is hardly ever mentioned or visited in Colombi... Pasto they just had their festivities...



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Old 01-14-2019, 09:52 AM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pueblofuerte View Post
I think its just you.
Possbily, but actually I think there's something to it. I mentioned it to the people I was with at the time and they said that the coastal areas of Spain, particularly in the south, were where a bunch of people (a lot of criminals is actually what they said) had departed Spain for Colombia (kind of like how English criminals "populated" Australia). Now that I remember there's a Cartagena Spain that we drove through, it wasn't this town that I noticed the people but somewhere in that region.
There's an area of Colombia where a lot of Brits had settled it a couple hundred years ago. I don't know the history of them, but physical features of the people are definitely very Anglo.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astral_Weeks View Post
I like El Poblado and Laureles.
Even popeye (Escobar's right hand man) was robbed at gunpoint in El Poblado a couple years ago.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pueblofuerte View Post
Be careful of expectations though. When I was younger I trekked to a smaller archaeological site (pueblito) with the idea that I was going to become chummy with the Kogui people there. That they would appreciate some sort of encounter with a "conscientious younger brother". I was wrong, they didn't want to know,
This is typical of indigenous peoples throughout the Americas. They were marginalized a long time ago and have no recourse but to keep to themselves. I'm very familiar with it, I grew up literally within walking distance of one of the Indian reservations in New Mexico.
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Old 01-20-2019, 06:54 AM
 
349 posts, read 380,949 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pueblofuerte View Post


Brazilians whilst culturally just as fun loving and warm are a bit more down in the dumps lately and highly critical of the current climate.
'Fun loving' is an odd term to use to describe a country of 300+ million people. Everywhere HAS fun loving people, fun loving environments. When we start to make generalisations like this, we throw our argument off course. Brazil has a lot of issues that it needs to confront right now, so the climate of "fun" might be hard to find. Anyway, fun is for kids...
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Old 01-20-2019, 11:48 AM
 
Location: London, UK
2,876 posts, read 1,556,332 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shirleyeve View Post
'Fun loving' is an odd term to use to describe a country of 300+ million people. Everywhere HAS fun loving people, fun loving environments. When we start to make generalisations like this, we throw our argument off course. Brazil has a lot of issues that it needs to confront right now, so the climate of "fun" might be hard to find. Anyway, fun is for kids...
Yes, you're right in that its a generalisation but the 'joie de vivre' attitude (maybe that phrasal connotation fits better) is palpable and can be felt, although sadly this is being slowly chipped away ever since 2014; Brazil has received knock after knock.
In any case if you ever travel to South America, that's the only time you will be able to understand what we're talking about as you will experience it first hand.

PS. Brazil has 209 million people not 300+, You're out by nearly 4 x Australias.
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