After returning to Madison after my first summer of fieldwork in Colombia (2011), I told a member of dissertation committee that I had conducted over 70 interviews. She was astonished. She explained that some people go into the field and never leave their apartment. I tried to downplay my surprise as I thought to myself, “How is that possible? What were they doing?” I reasoned that it was because most political scientists are better with data than they are with human contact. I smirked as I thought how silly those other PhD-ers must have been.
Today I understand.
Jake and I spent *nearly* the whole day within the confines of our apartment and it was fantastic. We took no public transportation, but rather walked to get our groceries, pick up our laundry, and take out money from an ATM for the month’s rent. The rest of the day, we hid from Bogota and relished in it. We wrote a grant proposal, we browsed Facebook, we laughed together, and we cooked (twice). We fed “Juno” the apartment dog and then we did a yoga class in our bedroom after leaning our mattress against the wall. We laid in Savasana for a good 12 minutes.
The climax of our cloistered day was when Diego the maintenance man came to install a new gas water heater. We have been six days without hot water.
We ate our dinner patiently, listening to Diego drill into the wall and maneuver rubber hoses. Finally, when he left, we took long, glorious, marvelous, unapologetic showers. I don’t think I have ever enjoyed a hot shower that much. We will now snuggle into bed, watch episode 12 of “Orange is the New Black” on Netflix and wake to face daunting Bogota again.