Au revoir San Javier

It’s five in the morning and within the dreams we hear the moan of the cattle. It’s six in the morning, the air is crisp and the first car passes by the road picking up the dirt and the memory that we are in the country side. It’s seven am and the rooster makes sure we know he is up and checking everything is under control. It’s seven-thirty and my cousins wake me up and pull me out of bed. We must go to the mountain before the adults wake up. It’s eight am, we leave the house and walk on the dirt. The mist of the savannah of Bogotá touches our bones, we run to warm up and reach the mountain. We climb up and play there until one of the adults comes on a bicycle and calls us from the bottom of the mountain. It’s time to go home and eat the pancakes that our grandpa Juan taught everyone how to make.

The day goes by and we clean the house, play with the dogs, visit the neighbors and drink fresh milk. We dream of a bright future as we sneak through the fancy interiors of Rocas de Lourdes a house that belonged to the president’s cousin and was being taken care by a humble peasant and his wife. We have lunch with them, which consists of potato, yuca, green plantain, rice and beef, and after that we drink a tinto to prepare for the siesta.

After the siesta, we play more and attempt to make a camp fire outside of the house. As the evening drops, we take showers, put on our Christmas clothes and cover them with ruanas. We sit down by the fireplace, pray, play music and enjoy the warmth of the San Javier house.

This was a chunk of the Espinosas’ life spent at Finca San Javier in Tabio, Colombia. A house built by Don Juan Espinosa and Doña Isabel Granados de Espinosa. The design of the house was inspired by a dutch magazine that Don Juan had taken from work, and even though he wasn’t an architect, he was a clever guy that could teach himself English by just reading books, and of course could build a house for his family. The house stood for many decades and yesterday had to be demolished as the structure wasn’t sound anymore.

I want to share with you, the last images of the San Javier house built by my grandfather, where my mother was born and raised and where I got to spend the most beautiful holidays of my life. A house where many love stories began and flourished, where I bonded with my cousins. This is San Javier the beginning of a family that like many other families has seeing glorious times and not so good times, and that despite all the differences and changes, still keeps the memories which will always be food for the soul and light for the heart.

Enjoy …

Dining Room - Where we had great meals and conversations

One of the bedrooms

Back of the house - Showing it was time to rest

Left side of the house - Dipping into the soil

San Javier during its last days

The mountain - Tabio, Cundinamarca

Tabio's main square with church behind

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