Hi friends! I’m back today with another recap of our adventures in Colombia! In case you missed it, you can get caught up with my first post about exploring Medellin and my second post about touring a Colombian coffee farm. Today we’re talking about the long weekend we spent at a finca, which translates to “farm” but is basically a villa that large groups can rent. We wound up spending three days at the finca with all Fabio’s family, and we had an absolute blast!
Also I wasn’t kidding when I said there were about 50 family members with us – we were a huge group!
And you know what was even better? Our good friends Jojo and Jadd came with us!! Jojo has a couple of high school friends living in Medellin right now, so when we told her we were going to Colombia for vacation and asked if she and Jadd wanted to come with us (months ago!) they happily agreed! It was awesome to have them join us at the finca for part of the time too. Having some other “gringos” around definitely made the experience better for me! Plus these two are so much fun. 🙂
The finca itself featured a huge house (it slept 50) plus a pool, cabana area, and outdoor kitchen. It was beautiful!
There were also a few resident animals running around, including some cute pups…
…and a bunch of peacocks!
It must have been mating season because this guy extended his feathers to the female about every hour.
We arrived on Saturday and quickly unpacked our bags for some pool time!
We had a great time splashing around in the water with all of Fabio’s cousins, who were so incredibly fun/welcoming/sweet to me.
(That’s me above in the peach colored dress lol. Talk about awkward…)
Later in the afternoon we cracked open some beers and had fun hanging around the giant tables in the kitchen! This was so much fun and a great way to get to know everyone better.
At around 4:00 pm, Fabio and his sister Diane had an announcement to make! Diane and Alex were celebrating their one year anniversary, and it was a little more than a year out to our own wedding, so we decided to throw a surprise party for everyone in Colombia who likely won’t be able to attend our wedding and weren’t able to make it to Diane and Alex’s. We had planned everything way in advance and even spent some time in the afternoon decorating the cabana with string lights we had gotten from Target before our trip, so it was really nice to see all the cousins, aunts, and uncles so surprised and excited by our announcement. Who doesn’t like a surprise party?!
We told everyone to meet under the cabana at 6:00 pm, and I was so happy to see that our string lights looked perfect under there!
Then everyone sat down in a little designated seating area we had arranged and waited for the party to start.
At a little after 6:00 when everyone was gathered, we turned off all the lights to announce our biggest surprise: a live band! The band members walked up to the cabana playing their instruments, and then when they were fully assembled we turned the lights back on so everyone could see them.
Here was the reaction when people realized it was a live band and not just more music playing from the stereo we had been using so far in the trip.
Fabio, Diane, Alex, and I had another surprise up our sleeves though: a caterer came in to grill up a bunch of chicken, meat, and pork for everyone! Once again, everyone was really surprised that we brought food in and were so appreciative.
The rest of the night was dedicated to dancing!
Once the music got started it was all salsa all the time, and Fabio’s aunts and cousins did a great job of teaching us how to dance.
The band did an amazing job at playing all the best salsa songs (not that I would know, but Fabio’s aunts and uncles sure seemed to love it) so the energy of the party was absolutely perfect. Everyone seemed to have a great time dancing and drinking, and then running to back to their tables for little bites of the delicious BBQ here and there. I couldn’t have asked for a better party!
Having Jojo and Jadd there was pretty amazing too. Thank you guys for coming!!
We wound up drinking and dancing late, late into the night, and it was just SUCH a blast. This was definitely one of the highlights from the whole trip!
(Fabio’s aunts added a few peacock feathers and glow sticks to my hair, haha!)
The next day we awoke to a much-needed breakfast of arepas, cheese, eggs, and potato hash. Yum!
Then we repeated the events of the day before, which included pool time and lots of chatting with the cousins!
The boys also got in a few sweaty games of soccer while the girl cousins painted their nails and had girl talk. Typical. 🙂
Every once in a while the peacocks would start cawing, and we’d always find them perched on random areas of the house. These are some weird animals, let me tell you!
Later that evening, we all joined in the cabana for a white party!
This party was much more relaxed, and we spent the evening taking pictures of the family and playing games.
Fabio’s immediate family, plus Alex and me!
All of us!
It was such a fun night, and we stayed up until nearly 4:00 am playing games like musical chairs and concentration 64, which brought me back to elementary school days! While we were all probably a little too old for these games, it was hard to find games we could play in English and in Spanish, and it actually wound up being a blast. (Especially with a little alcohol involved 🙂 haha!)
It was such a fun evening, and I couldn’t believe when I saw how late it had gotten. We finally cleaned everything up and went to bed after 4:00 am. Yikes.
The next day started off as another pool day! The sun was so strong on Monday, and I wound up lathering myself up in so much sunscreen, but still wound up with a bit of a sunburn.
Oh well, it’s tan now! 🙂
The entire family was in the pool on Monday to escape the heat, and we had a ton of fun squirting each other with squirt guns and having an epic splash war.
Later in the day, we went on a horseback riding adventure!
I haven’t been horseback riding since I was a little kid so I knew I was going to be pretty terrible at it, but I love animals so I was strangely calm around these big guys.
I named mine Colby (I’m sure he had a real name, we just didn’t know what it was) and I wound up talking to him almost the whole time I was riding. Is that weird?
We took the horses on a ride through the areas surrounding the finca, which gave us some beautiful views of the mountains.
Colombia is so pretty!
Once we were done riding, we took the horses out to the back of the finca where we were able to feed them mangoes. There were a ton of ripe ones on the ground, and the horses gobbled them right up! (They spit out the pits, in case you were wondering.)
I had a lot of fun feeding them from my hand too, even though it wound up being quite messy.
Shortly after that, it was time to pack our bags and leave the finca! Overall it was such an amazing weekend, and I thank Fabio’s cousins, aunts, and uncles from the bottom of my heart for making me feel so welcome in their family. I have never felt so much love and hospitality from total strangers, and I felt truly honored to be accepted into this group.
Thank you, Echalocos! (That’s their family nickname, since loco means crazy and they proclaim that they’re all a little coocoo!)
Question of the day: Do you like horses? Would you feed a horse mangoes from your hand?