Sunday, August 10, 2014

Festival Latino 2014

Majority of last week, I was down with a terrible flu. As soon as I realized I'm getting the flu, I didn't even bother to wait to get an appointment from my physician, I ran to urgent care. Waited for almost two hours, only to get a prescription for an antibiotic dose. I don't know how much it helped though, because the next two days I was too weak to even to get out of the bed. My situation got better by Thursday, and by Friday I was almost back to normal. 

So, during the weekend I wasn't ready to sit back and relax. I knew the summer is coming to an end soon and wanted to reap the benefits of the longer sunny days before mother nature throws us another Polar Vortex. The moment I had my energy drink, that is my well made tea, I searched through the internet, looking for the events happening around Columbus. I came across "Festival Latino 2014". 

"Do you wanna go?," I asked my husband. 

"Sounds like fun, we can go," he said, "but, before that I have some work to do," he added. 

"It's alright. Even I have to walk the dog and do some other stuff." 

"We'll plan to go after 1pm may be," he suggested. 

 The agenda said all the entertainment events start after 1pm at Bicentennial Park in Columbus, OH. I looked for more information about the festival. This is event that has been around since 1996 and held every year since then. It did sound good. 

By about 2.30pm, we managed to get ready and leave the house. It was a beautiful day, the sunshine was exactly the way I liked; not too hot with a touch of soothing warmth. 

"Perfect day for a festival," I thought. 

To some weird reason, we parked our car 1 mile away from the Bicentennial Park and walked. I didn't regret that even a bit. I like walking. Downtown Columbus was almost deserted and we could get a nice up close view  of many buildings. Though Ara kept pointing at empty car parks, regretting the decision to park further, I enjoyed our walk across the city. 

By the time we got to the Scioto River we heard the music and saw the tents.It made us walk a little faster. Stopping by the lookout place near the Scioto River, we checked the festival grounds through the built-in binoculars. It looked fun. 

"I can see something very Latin from here," Ara pointed to a tent. 

'5-hour energy drinks' We both giggled. 

By the time we reached there, a Latin band was playing on stage. Looking at the agenda I assumed it was Herman Olivera. I didn't understand a word he said, but I thoroughly enjoyed the music. I, anyway, love music and dancing. Though, I didn't know Latin dancing, I couldn't stand still. 

We spent few minutes enjoying the music and looking at the couples who did well in latin dancing. Then we headed towards the stalls. There were many stalls with crafts, which I thought native to latin America. Ponchos, beaded jewellery, wooden toys and arts were the best among all. 

Ara offered to buy me anything I wanted. But, I couldn't picture myself going around wearing those heavy pieces of Jewelry. So, I had to decline that offer. Thinking about it now, I should have asked for a rain check. :-)

We slowly headed for the food area,it was the fun area. I'm not a big foodie, but, Ara was excited. They had mainly Mexican, Peruvian and Brazilian food. I could tell those were authentic, not because I couldn't pronounce a single name, because I have never even heard about those before. I thought Mexican is all about Tacos, Quesadillas and Tortillas. But, these vendors had much more variety. Salt level was a bit more than I would have liked, but everything tasted good. 

I treated myself with a nice Pina Colada, served in a Pineapple. It was fun, refreshing and tastier. I liked it so much, I forgot all about sharing until I got to the last bit. All Ara got was the bit of juice soaked to the pineapple. My bad!

This festival was a unique experience for me. For the first time in the three years I lived in USA, I felt like a tourist; a tourist visiting South America. I think it was the effect of the food, music and the people at the festival. 

I still don't know what I ate, or what they announced on stage, but I know if I have a chance I'll be going next year too!

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