One of the nice thing about hostels is that, although most people are there because they can’t afford a nicer place to stay, theft is rare. Most hostels also provide lockers as added security. In our hostel two lockers broke, meaning there wasn’t enough space for everyone to store their valuables.
One English guy called Dave had money taken from his hostel room the day he arrived. He was glad they left his phone and laptop, but still it was an unpleasant experience. For everyone. To know that you can’t trust the people in the hostel, whether it’s your fellow travellers or the staff, just puts you on edge. For the entirety of my stay I didn’t dare leave my laptop or phone charging unattended. I sat right by it, an annoying inconvenience, but better than losing my precious electronics.
My Swedish friend Victor brought a football with him. Space when travelling is always limited, so it surprised me he had been travelling for months with a fully pumped football, but he saw it as a necessity.
After trying to round everyone up and two to three hours after we planned, we went to play at a free local football pitch. Myself, Victor, a Colombian guy whose name escapes me, Dave, his Canadian friend Chris all combined with some local Colombian teenagers into a match. That somehow had offsides. Everyone was exhausted at the end. Travellers don’t get much exercise beyond hiking, and the Medellin heat was about 31 degrees celsius.
The next day was a Copa America grudge match between Colombia and their rivals to the East, Venezuela. It did not end well for Colombia. Perhaps the Venezuelans were more motivated by their press – http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/row-zed/naked-news-venezuelan-tv-presenter-5898592
It’s a shame, because it was a great atmosphere during the game. Bars and restaurants packed out in a sea of yellow Colombian shirts. At the end it was just quiet. Which is how it should be. I’ve seen Turkish fans throwing chairs and getting very agitated at the end of a lost game, I’m glad I didn’t get caught in the middle of anything like that here.