Los reyes de la noche, la policia y te ingles. // The kings of the night, the police and English tea.

Last night was my best night so far in Colombia. As a self-proclaimed reggaeton junkie the chance of seeing the big Don was too good to miss. For those people who think they don’t know who Don Omar is, just remember that song that was doing the rounds last summer, Danza Kaduro, and the Puerto Rican in Fast and the Furious.

To top it off, the lead singer of the Dominican bachata group Aventura, Romeo Santos, was performing as well. they called it Los reyes de la noche – The King of Bachata, and the King of Reggaeton (they also had the King of Vallenato, but minor, that is not what I was there for.)

You have never seen wannabe groupies until you have been to a concert like this in a Latin American country. I’m 94% percent that the girls accompanying the guys next to us (who where were dressed like rappers from the 90s, short of the bandanas) were prostitutes. And in my life I have never seen so many examples of plastic surgery and enhancements in one place. It was the stuff of Lil Wayne’s wet dreams, “fat asses”, “titties” and “badunkadunks”. I am sorry, but they the look like frozen jello balls on your chest I refuse to simply call them breasts.

Anyway, to set the scene, a group of us from my uni bought tickets for an area on front of the general audience, which cost a bomb but I felt like it was a sacrifice that could be made for getting a view of my prospective husband (#TeamDon). We got ready at a friends house, they pre-drank and I tanked up on Nestea. They are still not used to this, and there is a running joke that I drink milk instead of alcohol. I can never tell if that is an innuendo or not…

The venue was out of town so we had a bus hired to take us there. When we arrived there were loads of people queuing. Thank goodness we jumped that. We got searched on our way in, which was standard. I am continuously being frisked as I go into any public building here. They even do it at every door of my university. When I went to the Movistar concert and saw Chocquibtown play it was forbidden to take makeup in with you, we got frisked 3 times each, you had to present your Colombian ID and the boys had to pay to leave their belts with random men in the street to collect later.

We had a sick view inside, and we were on the tables and chairs in order to get even higher, literally dancing on the tables to reggaeton and bachata all night long. Romeo Santos was amazing, he performed for ages, and he even held mini auditions from the crowd for Aventura stand-ins, so that he could perform one of their most famous songs with 3 other people, then the best singer was given a $200 prize. It was a nice change that he pulled some boys up, instead of doing an Usher and finding a girl from the crowd to whine on. Plus I don’t think the Latinas in the audience would have really stood for that, the life of the girl would have been at risk…

Don Omar performed a tighter set, not taking breaks between his songs like Romeo, but I swear I haven’t screamed like that since I was 16, when my friend Katie took me to see Chris Brown and he performed “Take You Down”, topless, gyrating on the moving stage. Natti Natasha from the Dom Rep even came to sing Dutty Love with him which was lo máximo  The Don was amazing, but I had my dreams “of forever after” shattered when he told us that the day of his wedding was the best day of his life. I heard the hearts of every woman in the audience break at once in that moment. No one had told me that he was married. Sad times.

On a serious note though, he took a moment in the show to talk about his life, and how he worked hard to achieve where is is right now. He said that the most important thing in life is to have a good relationship with yourself and God, and to work hard everyday, for yourself, for your family, for Bogota, for Colombia and for the world. In writing this looks really cheesy, and in truth coming out of the mouth of your fulanito latino that wouldn’t really change, but there was something about the way he was speaking that was really sincere and surprised me. He is the reggaeton king, and I was sort of expecting him to play that up, and reach out to las mujeres in the audience, but he seemed to be making more of an effort to be positive, without worrying about telling everyone that he was married, and he took a moment to talk about faith. That was nice. Then he got back into the reggaeton, everyone was grinding, they spurted out glittery paper over everybody and we started to leave.

It was 3.30am.

People had been drinking.

The fights began.

Luckily, half of the Colombian population are police or in the military, (that is a joke not a statistic) so there were loads of men in yellow or green around who could get involved and “break things up”. It is quite astonishing watching the people around a fight getting involved, there were people picking up chairs and lobbing them at other people, the woman behind us picked up a large bottle of vodka to chuck, but we were all like “are you out of your motherfucking mind?!” and she backed off.

Eventually we got out.

There were just over 10 of us in total and some were more worse for wear than others. One guy, Omar, was on a level beyond the rest, and as we were leaving he started asking the police to take him home. Bless him, he is pretty skinny, and was wearing white jeans and loafers, so the police just passed him and left it out. Thing is, when everyone has been drinking things start to pop off, and eventually the guys were with got into a brawl with a guy who had pushed one of them. The police came, split it up, and we tried to lead the boys off. Turned around two seconds later and they were in another pickle, but this time there were 20 policemen on the 4 boys. The police started kicking Omar in, and he was covered in blood. All over his white trousers and we had to literally pull the police off him. When they saw us, the majority of them moved off sharpish, because they knew that they had overstepped the line but there was nothing that we could do. The ones that were left behind refused to show their ID and our bus had to pick up some school kids from the other side of town, and by this time it was nearly 4.30am. Someone had put the shirt that Omar had been using to stop the blood on my hand, and I was pissed. I was pissed that the police had beaten him up. I was pissed that they had run away, and I was pissed that the ones that were there wouldn’t show their IDs because they knew that they would get into trouble. But most of all I was pissed to have somebody else’s blood on me. I wiped my hand down the police officer’s uniform smearing red into the flourescent yellow, we rounded up the boys and we caught the bus just in time.

It was a good night overall, I loved the concert, I hated the police, and I finished the night with a well needed cup of tea and a bowl of Special K Vanilla and Almonds, luxuries that I myself can not afford to buy myself over here, chatting to the very beautiful Tania in her kitchen. The tea was made in the microwave, and I though to myself that was somewhat unconventional, and then I remembered the night that I had just had and laughed to myself at the stupid things that occupy my mind sometimes.

Hope you are blessed and happy right now. Unless you are a policeman, then you can go to hell. Besos xxx



About Imani Amrani

Algerian Brit, with some Latina in me (I once ate an arepa). Freelance journalist. This blog is my double bed that I don't have to share, where I can take all of the duvet and spread myself out. Find older blog posts at https://theshakirahunter.wordpress.com In the meantime find 140-character nuggets from me at https://twitter.com/ImaniAmrani

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