Halloween night there was a party and I definitely stayed out too late, but the next day was Playa Verano. This was an event that I had been looking forward to because a band that I love, called Dragón y Caballero, was playing at this festival on the beach.
Yoyi and I spent the better part of the morning making Playa Verano promotional stencils to spray paint on his surfboards. It didn’t work very well at all. On the last surfboard I just ended up writing this, which took all of about 2 minutes and looked a lot better than the others. This little promotional surfboard spray painting got us free admission to the event. I now have a new appreciation for graffiti artists.
I had a truly Colombian moment when Yoyi and I got a ride from a motorcycle taxi. I sat behind the driver and Yoyi was behind me holding a surfboard on each side - I was sandwiched in by surfboards and people. Nobody blinked an eye at this. Earlier that morning I’d seen a family of 5 people on the back of a motorbike, so why would 3 people with 2 surfboards draw any attention? Yoyi read my mind and even though I had said nothing, he said to me, “Estás en Colombia ahora.”
Unfortunately, there were no waves, so the surfboards didn’t really get used. The beach was packed with people. I saw more augmentation than I’ve ever seen in one place in my life (no, I have never been to Brazil). I’ve heard that Colombia is called “silicone valley”, I can see why.
Bands played throughout the day. There was some kind of fashion show where women, and then men did the catwalk. Finally, it was time for Dragón y Caballero. They are a band from Cartagena, which is about an hour and a half from here. They are a mix of reggatón, reggae, and maybe even a little vallenato. Puro Costeño Colombiano in the best way. If you want to have an idea what Playa Verano was like, watch this video of Fruta Prohibida and when they are dancing at the beach party, throw in a lot more enhanced anatomy and some sketchy people who were drunk or high and you’ll almost be there. This was shot in Cartagena, which admittedly has a lot prettier buildings than anywhere around here though.
Fruta Prohibida has been a bit of theme song for Yoyi and me. I have to say I don’t mind him singing, “Eres para mi una diosa,” to me. No, I don’t him singing that I’m a goddess to him at all. There is a line in the song that goes, “a tu lado no importa” which means by your side it doesn’t matter. We purposely mondegreen it and sing “a tu lado in Portland” because it does sound like that. Listen, it really does.
Dragón y Caballero did not disappoint. Kären came out to see them too, and I think it’s fair to say we all had a good time. I knew dancing on a Colombian beach to a big name Colombian band would be fun. Yo tenía razón. You know what I mean.
*OK, it's true, this picture was taken a week before Playa Verano in Prado Mar.
Newa Lahana in Kirtipur
3 months ago