Who would have thought that our adventure in Colombia would take us to Belgium? Yet it was in Belgium that we had the privilege of presenting the world premiere of our film about Colombia with Exploration du Monde. For nearly two months we visited dozens of theaters in the Brussels region and in Wallonia to share our Colombian experience with an enthusiastic audience. The organization Exploration du Monde is dedicated to the presentation of “cine-conference” presentations in which filmmakers perform the narration of their film live on stage and answer questions from the audience.
We made 55 presentations at the rate of one to two per day. The very welcoming public was first intrigued by my French-Canadian accent but also curious to learn more about this great South American country. The tour was marked by the presence of our little family at each of the shows, proud witnesses of our Colombian adventure. Our two children who have lived the filming experience in Colombia were able to interact with spectators and share their passion for discovery. They have also experienced the tour’s “behind the scenes” with all the logistical challenges such as travelling, setting up audiovisual equipment, having meals at incongruous times, going to sleep late at night, etc.
This stay in Belgium has also allowed us to learn more about this country and all its complexity. We have learned about communities, regions, linguistic and political tensions. But the warm welcoming quickly made us feel at ease in all the places we visited. We were able to see the joie de vivre and humor of the Belgian people who in many respects have a lot in common with French-Canadians and Québécois.