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The Emotional Rollercoaster of My First Day In Colombia

My first day in Colombia

Yes, you read that correctly…

Not first week.

First month.

Not even first year.


And it’s true, a part of me was ready to pack up and leave less than 24 hours after landing. The emotional rollercoaster of my first day in Colombia had left me completely shell-shocked!


Day One: Fail #1

With Spanish classes at The Whee Institute starting at 2pm, I decided to head out that morning to grab a local SIM card. After a slow start, heading out that morning turned into heading out that afternoon…just before class.

Upon finally finding a phone shop, the store attendee informed me that they were out of SIM cards and I needed to go to another shop <insert sad, dejected face here>. By this time, I needed to start making my way to class so I decided to save the SIM card for another day.

Smiling man in Colombia

Stop laughing at me…it’s not polite!


Day One: Fail #2

I left the phone shop and walked to the restaurant next door. Since there was no time to eat at that point, I simply stole borrowed their Wi-Fi and ordered an Uber.

Five minutes passed by

10 minutes passed by

“Sorry your Uber driver has cancelled.”

I ordered another Uber and, like déjà vu, the outcome was almost identical.

Five minutes passed by

10 minutes…


“Sorry your Uber driver has cancelled!”

Laughing woman

HEY! I said stop laughing! ☹


Day One: Fail #3

After two failed Uber attempts, my projected time of arrival was just after 2pm, so I decided to flag down a cab. I showed him the school address and we were on our way. My first solo cab ride in Colombia! Weaving through traffic, I whipped out my phone to record video and capture the experience—


Once we arrived I sat my phone down on the seat, took out some money, paid the driver, said thank you, and hopped out.




The Chase

As soon as I closed the door I realized something—I never actually picked my phone back up after paying the driver. Watching the cab drive away, I did what any logical, able-bodied human being would do: took off running and screaming after it!

Believe it or not, I kept up for 4 blocks, until he turned onto a main avenue and I knew I couldn’t keep pace. I flagged down another cab, pointed ahead, and said:

“Follow that car!”

I had always wanted to use that line; however, I never imagined it would be under such circumstances. Also…that line only works if your driver speaks English. In my case, he just kinda looked at me like—wtf—and then proceeded to go nowhere. I lost sight of the taxi, and that was that.

The emotional rollercoaster of my first day in Colombia: no local currency AND a lost phone.  A lost phone that also happened to house my credit card, debit card, and even US driver’s license in its case.

Taking a seat during my first day in Colombia

What to do? What to do?

How would the rest of the week fare??? Stay tuned to find out!

Comment below if you’ve ever lost anything while traveling.


  1. Haha so funny.. but eventully things happen for a reason and I hop you enjoyed your trip overall

  2. Surekha says:

    omg! that’s a worst thing to experience as a tourist. I am not sure what I would have done in your place. I am glad things turned out good later for you

  3. Not a relly good start but there is always scope for betterment!

  4. Helen says:

    Oh no what an awful first day! I hope day 2 was better and you managed to sort the lost cards quickly.

  5. Lindsey says:

    Oh gosh not a great start at all, but I’m sure it will get much better.

  6. Wow! I can’t even deal. Just reading it all is stressful. My mouth dropped when you said you left your phone WITH your cards and license in it. Too much!

  7. Susan says:

    🙂 That post Tickled me, Thank you. Not sure what I’d do if I had lost my phone…breathing would be difficult 😉

  8. Ivelisse says:

    Omg I would love to go to Colombia one day! #Goals I bet it is gorgeous!

    Ivelisse | CarnationDreams.com

  9. Ashlee Adams says:

    Looks like it was an emotional day! I hope it all turned out great for you!

  10. Ayak says:

    My blood pressure would have been through the roof boy! I hope next week turns around for you. I’ll be tuning in.

  11. Elle (CleverlyChanging) says:

    I’m so sorry that this situation happened to you. I also had a wallet case on my phone and I lost it when I was on a trip in Hawaii. There were locals who helped me find it though. It sounds rough, but I hope that the experience turned around and became more positive.

  12. DR says:

    Dam that sounds like it was an almighty shift just to get through the first day. I know i would have struggled so major respect for sticking with it. Every bad irritating thing to happen is only making you stronger.

    • EG III says:

      I won’t front…I was almost ready to pack it up and leave after that first day. But I thought to myself..if all this happened on day one then things have GOT to get better!

  13. Kita says:

    Oh wow, I would have fainted from stress. I hope things turned out better. Will be waiting for part 2

  14. Ravi says:

    It looks like that day was just not for you. Bad days come out be an ‘All Time Remember’ experience:)..But your post has a lot of humor that made me smile at the end!

  15. Catvills says:

    What a horrible thing to lose your phone, credit and debit cards, and driver’s license! If that happened to me, I would probably bawl my tears out. Can’t wait to read about what happened next. I hope it will be a good one this time.

  16. Jennifer says:

    Oh dang!! That is quite a day for your first day in Colombia. I know I would be so mad after two Ubers canceling on me and then losing my phone with my U.S. identification cards and debit cards. Now I want to know what happened on Day 2!! Lol! (P.S.- I’m sorry; I was laughing a little as I read this, especially at the part “Follow that car!”)

  17. I can so visualise what all experience you had on your first day. I was laughing reading this. 🙂 Well, I haven’t lost anything while travelling, lucky me.

  18. Elizabeth O. says:

    OH MY! The horror of losing important things in a place that’s so alien to you. I think this is really quite an adventure and I hope things became better eventually.

  19. Freya Farrington says:

    wow! I’ve never actually been to Columbia myself but would love to visit one day! Although I’ve never lost anything while travelling, I have got lost myself before! All part of the adventure right?

    • EG III says:

      Absolutely, in some ways travel doesn’t actually even begin until you allow yourself to get lost in a place 🙂

  20. Elena says:

    Well, do not give up that is the only advice I can give you at this point. Hope everything will go well in the future.

  21. Ali Rost says:

    I laugh (and cry) with you. Oh dear, I’ve had more days like this that I’d care to admit. Not necessarily while traveling, but I’m forever leaving things behind. It’s a good thing I live in Iowa where people (for the most) part are honest. Whenever I’ve gone back to retrieve something, it’s usually waiting for me in the lost and found. Can’t wait to read more of your saga

  22. Shirley says:

    I am glad things work out for you. It happens with me once while we were travelling to LA i lost my Apple watch but the company whom we have hired to provide us the Shuttle, one of his driver helps us to find the watch.

    • EG III says:

      I’m glad you got your watch back…My watch is like a part of my arm so I woulda felt completely naked.

  23. Evelyn Reese says:

    Wow, I am so glad that thing eventually turned around for you. It seems this can definitely be a learning experience.

  24. Dennis Martinson says:

    Glad you found your phone Ed. I got lost in eastern Diyala Province Iraq in February 2005 for a few hours one time. Fortunately no one got their eye poked out. Safe travels!

    • EG III says:

      Wow, getting lost in Iraq makes losing my phone seem like nothing. Glad you’re still here with us and enjoy home!

  25. Wow! I’m happy that things turned around eventually. Talk about what doesn’t break you, makes you stronger.

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