Okay in Cartagena

by Avtar Khalsa

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Cartagena is a beautiful port city on the Caribbean coast of Columbia. Founded by the Spanish in 1533, it is the oldest European-style city in the Western Hemisphere. It's a good place for a norte americano who speaks a little Spanish to go when he needs to break away from life in the states for a while. The ocean is right there, and the mountains are not far away. He can sip his coffee, gaze out at the water, and either try to remember or try to forget.


Sitting here sipping my coffee in a colorful
South American café
Gazing out over the water
Just up the hill from the bay
Another beautiful morning
I won’t have to shovel snow
And the hurricanes all head up north to the states
Or Mexico

So I’m okay in Cartagena
I find ways to have fun
The breeze blows in each afternoon
Off of the Caribbean
It’s not the same without you
But life goes on somehow
And I’ll be okay in Cartagena
For now

Bunch of us ex-pats get together
One night a month around eight
The drinking kicks off early
The music goes on late
I sing a lot of the old songs
But there’s one that I don’t do
It’d just remind me of you

But I’m okay in Cartagena
Don’t have to pay much rent
Them Yanqui drug war dollars
They just subsidize the government
My visa says I’m a tourist
I guess it could become a career
And I’ll be okay in Cartagena
This year

Yeah there’s rebels in the jungle
Drug cartels in Medellin
But down here on the coast
Well it’s a whole different scene
I can walk the beaches down in Santa Maria
It’s summer nearly every day
Sometimes it rains more than others
But that’s okay

Well I heard you’re getting married
Moving back to town
A girl like you deserves to have
Someone who’ll stick around
And I’m the kind that when I run
It’s like a marathon
I don’t stop until I’m good and gone

So I wound up in Cartagena
Living day to day
Not quite free of your memory
But keeping the blues at bay
I miss the way you’d call my name
And I’ve always loved your smile
But I’ll be okay in Cartagena for a while

Yeah you’re only a couple of airports away
But you know how I hate to fly
And I’ll be okay in Cartagena
By and by


released November 20, 2013
Avtar Khalsa on guitar and vocals.




Avtar Khalsa Flagstaff, Arizona

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