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Esmeralda

"I shared my childhood with my siblings and some cousins that lived close-by. It was cool, very different from how it looks like today because the children don’t play much anymore. In my case, when we lived in the eastern neighborhood, we went to the park every Sunday. Or we played on a little mountain close to my house. We used canisters to ride down the hill. That was so fun. And in August we build our own kites, played and enjoyed ourselves. Living out in the countryside teaches you a lot. It shaped me, taught me to be a kind and simple person, and not to get attached too much to material stuff. I graduated with honor, which was a big achievement for me and my family. I worked after that, but later decided to continue my studies and become a professional. One day I would like to have my own business. And I want to travel and experience. I feel like I am a very free person, so living in only one place just isn’t for me. But despite all this, I believe I will always miss my land a…
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Mónica

"I’m from a nearby village called Paz del Rio, but I´ve been living in Sogamoso with my family for about twenty years now. I studied at the University of Bucaramanga as a graphic designer. Later, I wanted to learn English and therefore decided to go to Australia. At this time, my family thought I wouldn’t return. But when I came back to visit for a short period of time, I met the man who now is my husband, and I decided not to return to Australia but stay in Sogamoso, so I could be with him.
Another momentous event in my life was without doubt the birth of my son. Since I became a mother, I focused on being a good example for my son. I want to be an intelligent and independent person that achieves what they want and gets ahead. I want my son to see this in me, I want to be his guide so that in the end he is able to do the same. Besides that, since I´m working as an English teacher now, my goal is of course to help people struggling with this language, and one day I would love t…

Alberto

"I think people must assume I am some crazy guy who lives alone near the lake and who sails by himself, but since I’ve been doing it so long, I think people are used to it now. I’m a sailor, and am 59 years old. I am Colombian and was born in Brazil. I have an MBA from the University of the Andes.
When you sail in Tota, anything can happen. The only thing that has not happened to me on the lake while sailing is that the mast has not broken on me yet - everything else has happened to me. I’ve lost the main sheet for the sailing once. I have even lost the small plug that prevents water from entering the boat, so while I was sailing I began sinking in the middle of the lake. I’ve capsized many times; 90 degrees and even 180 degrees. But the most difficult time I had on the lake was during a special phenomenon on Lake Tota where the fog descends and sits atop the lake, blanketing the entire lake in clouds of fog. You’re able to see the sky above you, but you can’t even see for more …

Fernando

"I’m twenty years old, and I’ve been living in Sogamoso for my entire life. If I had to choose one thing about this town that I love the most, it would be the landscapes; I love the mountains, the plains, the lakes, etc. The environment in and around Sogamoso is beautiful. I am happy right now, as I work as a barber right now at Elegance Barbershop. For the short term, I plan on entering university, and my long term goal is to continue working and just have a happy life. In the future I plan to travel the world a bit and experience new and different things.

Sogamoso is a small city, but there are plenty of interesting spots that most people don’t even realize, and that’s what makes this city so intriguing; many curious things can happen here. I remember once that I was learning to ride a bicycle with my cousin, and for some reason I lost control and found myself crashing hard into a post. My cousin had to leave me to find help, and eventually I was taken to a private hospital. My …

Pedro

"I actually have lots of friends, but I can’t really meet them. Life as an architect kind of means not having any free time, and although I haven’t graduated yet, I can already tell (laughs). I live with my parents and I have been living with them for all my life. We live in a big house in the rural areas of Sogamoso. I like to draw; actually I like all kinds of arts. Dancing, photography, playing the piano. I enjoy all of these a lot. Also, I love to come here (Café La Montaña) with my friends - when I have the time to. To be honest, there aren’t many places to go to in the city, to hang out or to do stuff. So, what we do is just walking around, talking about different things. Or as I said, meeting here in La Montaña. I think this actually is my favorite place in Sogamoso. It is some sort of special to me. It’s just different from others, I don’t know how to describe it. But it’s very peaceful. I can read here, I can be focused on my work. I don’t know, I just think it’s a very …

Marco

"Everything is strongly connected to the local history of Sogamoso. There once lived a rich gentleman here, called Hernán Archila Montejo, that on his vacations to France noticed the similarity of both Sogamoso and France's climate in the summer. So back in 1927 he imported European fruit trees: plums, pears and peaches. With these plants, and because he was an intelligent man, he also brought a professional from France who was such a great man. Later he became good friends with my father. This specialist called Don Joseph Duret didn't only follow up on fruit trees; he also acted as an advocate of the French culture – especially for drinking wine – and of course my father as his friend found himself as a student of these teachings at some point. So some years later, it must have been in 1944, I was around 11 at that time, my father took me to the store Aponte de Sogamoso and bought an excellent French wine: Chateau d’Yquem. He let my try it - only a little drop - and poin…

Paula

"I was born in Sogamoso, and I grew up here for almost my whole life; it’s interesting, because I always found myself living with my grandmothers. First, I lived with my grandmother from my dad’s side, and also my great-grandmother, and now I’m living with my mom’s mom, along with my younger brother and my mother. My father lives and works in Bogota. At first he was a teacher, but now he works in an office at a public institution. I enjoy living in Sogamoso, because it is a city rich with art and culture. I have a lot of family here, but I also have family in many other places in Colombia. I’m currently in my last year of University at UPTC, studying foreign languages. Dance, art, and languages are a huge part of my life. While in high school, I was one member of a five-person dance group and often perform dance battles in the streets of Sogamoso.
Growing up, my father would listen to a lot of English music; artists like Michael Jackson, New Kids on the Block, The Beatles, etc w…