Again I am in the Colombian countryside playing paisa. But this time I have actually become a migrant worker. This experience started because my broke ass decided I wanted to stay in Colombia longer and not go back to the states yet. My broke ass is also broke and needs money to renew my visa AND do things. Things like not starve in Colombia.
So I came up to work on Diego’s family’s land helping plant chocolate trees.
And I’m calling them chocolate trees because I brilliantly bragged to everyone on Facebook and Twitter that I was going to go plant coca.
Cacao (Chocolate) Tree
Coca (Cocaine) Tree
Yup. I told the world I was going to work on a cocaine farm. Coca may be (my wrong pronunciation of) a hot delicious drink in the states; but CACAO is the name for chocolate down here; COCA is the name for cocaine.
I’m sticking with calling it chocolate trees.
I’m not actually planting the trees. Right now I am filling bags with dirt. Lots of bags; with lots of dirt.
Preparing bags that will eventually be used to plant chocolate trees
Today; in 5 hours (including cookie, and bathroom breaks), Diego and I have packed 700 bag, making $28,000! Ok, that’s in Colombian Pesos. It’s roughly equivalent to $14US
WOO HOO MIGRANT WORK!
It really isn’t that bad, considering I’ve been living on about 50,000 ($25USD) a week in Medellin. And here in the country; we have no expenses (unless I go to town and decide I want a box of cookies again). Actually ALL the workers are given room and 3 meals a day, and have their own bathroom with a shower (though the other workers; except one, don’t live in the main house. They have beds in a converted mini-barn-ish thingy a 2 minute walk off the main house).
So yes; I am a migrant worker, working my ass off, sore as fuck, and covered in dirt, for $14. Tomorrow our goal is 1,000 bags. (And a longer work day. The weather has been thwarting us.)