A couple of months ago I visited my homeland, Colombia, and I discovered that the more time I spend as an expat in the US, more comfortable I feel with my new life and more magical and meaningful are my visits to Colombia. I try to be aware of every scent, taste, or image, and I enjoy to the fullest visiting places and the company of people that I used to take for granted. After all, if you take some distance from something you are able to see the whole picture.
While in Colombia, one of those magical places that I visited was the farm of my friend Sergio, close to Bogotá. Sergio and I used to go to college together, and at some point he changed his major and our lives took separate paths. After more than fifteen years of finishing college, we got in touch because we share a common passion: Dogs.
Sergio finished school and is married to a wonderful, strong woman, Sandra, and they have two beautiful kids. They live in the little, green town of Subachoque and together they have dedicated a big part of their lives to rescue dogs from difficult situations where their chances to find a family were minimal. Sergio owns a little house in the mountains, surrounded by grasslands, trees, and creeks where his 32 dogs run and have a good life. Yes, you read well, 32 dogs. Taking care of them is not an easy task unless you have the patience and training necessary to help your dogs and not loosing your mind. Through positive reinforcement, Sergio devotes most of his days to teach his dogs new skills that make their lives much easier and happier. The result is a furry family in the green, cloudy mountains of Colombia.
During our visit my husband and I had the fortune of meeting some of the dogs and share with them a unique afternoon in the nature. All these dogs are survivors of a very recent sprout of distemper that was economically and emotionally devastating for Sergio and his family.
These are the stories of strong, brave dogs that live in the clouds of the mountains and the visual translation of what it felt to be surrounded by life, where the air smells like water and green mosses, and where despite difficulties there is always hope. Because things do not need to be perfect to be meaningful.