El Salvador - Reality or Hype?

For the first episode of the Calvin's Thoughts podcasts, I speak with fellow Marhelmer Karsten Coldevin of Norway about El Salvador. Karsten has been living in El Salvador for a few years now.

El Salvador has received a lot of attention in recent years after charismatic leader Nayib Bukele, a former advertising executive, became the country’s President.

While Bukele has been called a “dictator” by many western media sources, he enjoys a remarkable popularity rating and has allegedly transformed El Salvador from one of the poorest and most desperate places on earth - San Salvador was once the most dangerous city in the world - to allegedly, the safest country in the Americas.

Beyond that, El Salvador gained notoriety for making Bitcoin legal tender and promoting its use. El Salvador took the unprecedented step of becoming the first country to establish a national reserve in Bitcoin when it began buying bitcoin for its treasury, investing millions of dollars in the cryptocurrency (El Salvador currently owns thousands of Bitcoins, worth nearly $100M).

In this episode, Norwegian Karsten Coldevin, who began his polymath career as a linguist and is fluent in Spanish, gives us his perspective after living in El Salvador, buying real estate there, and starting a family.

Is El Salvador reality? Is it hype? We’ll find out in this episode from a Norwegian on the ground.