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Welcome to my blog and website, I hope you find your visit interesting.

The word is a force you cannot see, but you can see the manifestation of that force, the expression of the word, which is your own life.

Don Miguel Ruiz

Dia del la Raza/Columbus Day in Colombia

12 October 2015

Hi, I hope everyone is doing well. I am.

Today is Dia de la Raza (known as Columbus Day in the USA). Dia de la Raza is literally translated as 'day of the races'; that doesn't mean auto-racing or anything like that, it means people, ethnicities. It is a day to celebrate the heritage, colonization and cultural diversity of Latin America. But to the indigenous people of Colombia it is much different. They see it as a day to remember the painful and brutal conquest of their land by the Spaniards in the 15th and 16th centuries. So, now for a little history lesson:

Cristóbal Colón, the Spanish name of the man we call Christopher Columbus, never set foot in North America, and in South America he only visited Venezuela, Panama, Honduras and Costa Rica. He never even visited Colombia, which is named for the man. He sailed four times from Spain to the 'new world' visiting several of the Caribbean islands - Cuba, Hispaniola, the Bahamas, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago. The name Colombia was originally applied to all of the 'new world'. It was in the early 1800's that the geographical area known as Colombia was reduced to these Spanish territories - modern-day Colombia, Panama, Venezuela, Ecuador, and northwest Brazil, and which at one time was named the United States of Colombia

Colombia won it's independence from Spain in 1819 and adopted their first constitution in 1821. Colombia was the first constitutional government in South America. At that time the land area included Venezuela, but that country split off in 1929, and then the country of Equador split off from Colombia in 1830. In 1906 the USA bought Panama from Colombia as a future location for the canal. In Colombia there was a civil war that lasted for 2 years, started in 1863, and from that was the creation of the United States of Colombia. In 1886 that name was changed to the Republic of Colombia, as it is today.

So because today is a holiday most of my students have the day off from work and from english lessons.

Happy and safe Columbus Day/Dia de la Raza to you all.

That's about all for now, till next time, take care!

Chao!

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