Joseph Sexton was attracted to the city by a friend who told him about the goodies he could find in Medellin. Now, seven years later, he’s the mastermind behind Welcome to Medellin.
The weather, women, the friendly and loving culture here, being able to ride a motorcycle all year long and a promising economy were the reasons that kept him in Medellin when he arrived, back in 2011. We can also add the cost of living and how welcomed the paisas really make you feel, they truly are very kind, loving and receptive people, ready to make you feel at home no matter where you are from.
Coming from New York, and before enrolling in school and start attending to la Universidad Pontifica Bolivariana in Laureles to learn Spanish, his adapting process started by renting rooms to foreigners and then to Spanish-speaking people. While driving bicycle around the first couple months helped Joseph to get familiar with the city and understand the landscaping. Buying a motorcycle around five months later, allowed him to learn even more about the hidden gems in Medellin.
The adventure of creating your own company…
“Complicated” was the word used to describe how was the process of creating his own company here, compared to how would have been in his country. Now, I know that’s a scary word, but the reason why it was complicated was part of the adapting process as well. In Colombia, there’s a different pace in how people do things, something that coming from a fast-paced city like New York, creates some kind of shock. However, that was also part of the beauty about moving here, relaxing, taking things more calmly and just going with the flow. Creating his company was also an experience that helped him practice some of his Spanish since a friend introduced him to a lawyer who only spoke Spanish to help him with the whole process.
Considering the growth the city has been experiencing for the last couple of years and how this fact has attracted so many foreigners to relocate here, I was wondering if this situation is affecting the business in Medellin. Joseph explained that for him, people are so interested in the city that they want to buy a property here. So in his business, the real estate industry, things are better. The downside is that it is also more competitive now, which has forced him into sales –something that he prefers anyway- but still shows how things have changed since he started the business.
For those who want to have their own business in the city, Joseph is more than open and happy to help, paying attention to what kind of business people want to do and guiding them through the path he once walked.
Finally, and although “better” has different meanings as Joseph said when I asked if his life was better since he moved to Medellin, he confessed that it has indeed improved. Being a New Yorker means dealing with cold and snowy winters, something we don’t get to see here, so for an outdoors lover, the city has it all.