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Baby Buggy Barbques of Cali, Colombia


Did you ever wonder what happens to an old used baby buggy? Perhaps save it for another child? Give away to friends or relatives? Or perhaps cart if off to the thrift shop? Well, if you are a creative think-out-of-the-box Colombian entrepreneur, you’ll do something totally different. You’ll turn that baby buggy into a barbque and soon be selling your goodies from your portable “shop”.

I’m in Cali, Colombia for the week between Christmas and New Years, and of course there are huge gatherings in the local parks for the festivities. And if you’re an food vendor entrepreneur that can’t get a spot in one of the official food stalls, then the next best thing is to set up a free shop anywhere you can find space.

As I wandered through the park during the day, I saw an old baby buggy that looked quite strange. After taking a closer look, I let out a huge laugh — someone had converted it into a portable bar-b-cue! How clever, I thought. And as I continued walking, I saw another. Then another, and another. Dozens of them standing around in the park, waiting.

I was curious to find out what they were going to be used for. Then I saw a group of folks shucking corn — huge bags of it. Ahh ha! So that’s it.

A couple nights later…

Later that week I found myself strolling through that same park, but this time in the evening. The park was now packed with people — hungry people. So of course there were food vendors everywhere. And then I saw it, my first glimpse of a baby buggy barbque in action. Filled with hot glowing coals in the middle and roasted ears of corn sticking out on all sides like gigantic sunflower petals.

They were everywhere! Colombians definitely love corn-on-the-cob. I was quite entertained and pleased with the creativity of it all.

What possibly could go wrong?

But as I wended my way through the dense crowds, my pleasure turned into a big wide-eyed “uhhh ohhh”. Right there in the middle of the crowd, I saw a baby buggy vendor who had decided to be a traveling corn-on-the-cob salesman.

It was one thing to see them on a street corner, stationary. But someone pushing along a waist-high container of glowing hot coals, on uneven cobblestones rife with holes and puddles, with people all around including small kids shorter than the bottom of the grill… yikes!!

Another confirmation that you must always keep your wits about you and be aware of your surroundings when in other countries. Not advisable to be a cell-phone zombie here!

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