The Green Countryside Of Medellin

Green Like Ireland Is Green

“It’s a little odd, I know, because the countries are so different, but I can’t stop thinking about Ireland,” Kaitlin remarked during our day out in the country yesterday. “These hillsides are so green. Patchwork green…just like the Irish countryside…”

It’s true. The hills around Medellin showcase every shade of green Mother Nature has to serve up, from pastel to emerald, marked off in places, where farmers have been at work, in tidy geometric patterns, just like in Ireland. As the bright sun crosses overhead, the changing angles of light pick out the terraced plots, the cascading wildflowers, the blankets of grass, the leafy trees, spotlighting them in turn. You have the thought that you never knew green before, you only thought you did, just like in Ireland.

Finally, we’ve been venturing beyond our neighborhood, getting out to discover some of the mountain towns that surround Medellin. We’ve climbed the mammoth rock that juts more than 650 feet above Guatape, we’ve stopped for a traditional parrilla lunch in El Retiro, we’ve shopped for antiques and commissioned some custom-made furniture in Las Palmas (for about one-fourth the prices we’ve seen for the same things in downtown shops)…

And the more we explore, the better we like this place. “I don’t understand why the whole world doesn’t live here,” Lief joked yesterday as we were winding our way through more too-green-and-virgin-to-be-believed countryside.

This morning we’ll join the rest of Medellin for a walk through the city. Every Sunday, from dawn until 1 p.m., Avenida El Poblado is closed to traffic and becomes a pedestrians-only thoroughfare that nearly bursts with pedestrians of all descriptions–on skates, roller blades, skateboards, bicycles, and their own two feet, in pairs, with children, with dogs, and solo–delighting in the fact that they’re living in one of the world’s most delightful cities.

Kathleen Peddicord

Retire Overseas Conference Banner