Life is beautiful

Here are some excerpts from the second accompanier report that Jake and I submitted, which is framed around this passage:

Though the fig tree does not blossom,
and no fruit is on the vines;
though the produce of the olive fails,
and the fields yield no food;
though the flock is cut off from the fold,
and there is no herd in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the LORD;
I will exult in the God of my salvation.
(Habakkuk 3:17-18)

In the midst of the tragedy of internal displacement, living with the scars of physical, psychological, and economic violence, or simply with the endemic problem of poverty, faith in God’s greatness and presence continues to flow through the veins of most of the Colombian people we have met. Here in this place where violence and death are close at hand, life itself is seen as a gift in a way that is difficult for many of us in the U.S. to comprehend.

Last Saturday night we went with several of the young adults to watch the Garabato del Norte parade, one of the pre-carnaval events. The garabato is one of the traditional carnaval elements, men and women in brightly colored costumes of red, yellow, green, and black who fight against death, symbolized by someone dressed up as a skeleton. The men have wooden sticks, but the real weapon is the fiesta, the dancing and happiness that the couples represent. This is one of the lessons we have to learn here, that life goes on as long as you can live it joyfully, no matter how difficult the situation may be.

In that spirit, I’d like to share the lyrics of a song that’s getting a lot of radio play these days. It talks about all of the simple beauties and pleasures of life that we can enjoy, even though life is often so painful.
I’ve included my English translation after the original.

Esta Vida

Me gusta el olor que tiene la mañana
Me gusta el primer traguito de café
Sentir cuando el sol se asoma en mi ventana
y me llena la mirada de un hermoso amanecer

Me gusta escuchar la paz de las montañas
Mirar los colores del atardecer
Sentir en mis pies la arena de la playa
y lo dulce de la caña cuando beso a mi mujer

Sé, sé que el tiempo lleva prisa
pa’ borrarme de la lista
pero yo le digo que…

Aay… ¡qué bonita es esta vida!
aunque a veces duela tanto
y a pesar de los pesares
siempre hay alguien que nos quiere
siempre hay alguien que nos cuida

Aay… ¡qué bonita es esta vida!
y aunque no sea para siempre
si la vivo con mi gente
es bonita hasta la muerte
con aguardiente y tequila.

Me gusta escuchar la voz de una guitarra
Brindar por aquel amigo que se fue
Sentir el abrazo de la madrugada
y llenarme la mirada de otro hermoso amanecer.

Sé, sé que el tiempo lleva prisa
pa’ borrarme de la lista
pero yo le digo que…

Aay… ¡qué bonita es esta vida!

This Life

I like the smell of the morning
I like the first sip of coffee
To feel when the sun rises in my window
and fills my gaze with a beautiful sunrise

I like to hear the peace of the mountains
to see the colors of sunset
to feel the sand of the beach on my feet
and the sweetness of sugar when I kiss my wife

I know that time is in a hurry
to wipe me off the list
but I say…

Ay! life is so beautiful
even though sometimes it hurts so much
And, in spite of our burdens,
there’s always someone who loves us
there’s always someone who cares for us

Ay! life is so beautiful
and even though it doesn’t last forever
if I live it with my people
it’s beautiful unto death,
with aguardiente and tequila.

I like to hear the voice of a guitar
to toast to a friend who has gone
to feel dawn’s embrace
and fill my gaze with another beautiful sunrise

I know that time is in a hurry
to wipe me off the list
but I say…

Ay! life is so beautiful!


About Sarah

I serve with Presbyterian World Mission as liaison to the Andean region. This blog is a place to share stories, experiences, and observations, both my own and those of friends and colleagues and the occasional item of news.
This entry was posted in Colombia, Musings, Prayer and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Life is beautiful

  1. Anonymous says:

    thanx a lot ….this english version of the song was very helpful in understanding the depth of this song .

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