In an attempt to share big news with as many people at once, here’s a letter I sent to some friends. After such a trying couple of years, I am extremely excited and honored to participate in fellowship that will allow me to explore Colombian culture. I can’t wait!
Some of you are aware that I have accepted a fellowship to teach English in Colombia, South America. I will be living in a small, charming town north of Bogota called Villa de Leyva. I will be joining about 20 other fellows from different countries (mostly from the U.S.) in Bogota for training before residing in our respective cities/towns. In Villa de Leyva, I will be joining three other fellows who seem very lovely; we’ve talked and exchanged advice over email.
Villa de Leyva is a small town in the Andean Region of Colombia. The Department, similar in governance to a state, is called Boyaca and it’s primarily a rural, farming region. The population is under 10,000 and it’s considered one of the nicest colonial villages in the Colombia. The entire town is a National Monument! There are many areas of interest including the main square, possibly one of the biggest in the world; an ostrich farm (I’m sure that’s not something you’d think I’d be excited about, but I am!); a fossil museum; an area of seven waterfalls; several restaurants right in town, and many more attractions. Admittedly, I’m interested in visiting an old astronomic observatory made of phallic stones, thought to be created by the Muisca Indians, called “El Infiernito” or little hell in English. As a child, I loved astronomy and I still appreciate it. The climate is temperate, the town is a vacation hub for many in Bogota, and the scenery looks amazingly serene.
Many have asked why and how I decided to accept this fellowship. I’d been thinking about teaching overseas for awhile. As I began to look into it seriously, a good friend sent me an application for the Atlas Corps experience without knowing I was seriously pursuing something like this. Kismet! How surprised was I when I was accepted! It’s been a remarkable, yet extremely challenging couple of years for me working to build my consulting experiences. This opportunity will allow me to continuing working on that while experiencing and learning international social entrepreneurship skills and volunteering to teach English. Because of everything falling into place, I am extremely excited to be a novice expat in Colombia during 2014!
In hopes to be as prepared as possible, I’m asking for your support to help me with this experience. Please check out my GoFundMe page: http://www.gofundme.com/CarolynLoweryColombia. Every thought, prayer, and penny is appreciated! I’ll keep in touch via social media outlets and through my blog.