When I lived in Europe last year, I decided to make a tradition of having monthly posts to re-cap where I was, how I was feeling, how I had grown and where I was headed. Now, only a few short months after being away from Europe, I am grateful that I wrote those posts because I look back and reflect at all the things I did and how I became a better and more whole person during my time away.
I am only in Mexico for three months so doing monthly posts would be too long of a gap in between (and only three posts in total!) so I am going to *try* and do weekly posts (on Fridays) to re-cap the week’s activities.
Here we go!
My first week in Mexico has exceeded all my expectations by far! Leaving Vancouver I felt so hesitate. I was worried about my safety. I was worried I would be terribly homesick. I was worried. Period. But something happened when we arrived in Mexico City, I realized it was just like every other big city I had been to. It smelled of urine and sewer, it was hot, it was noisy. It almost felt comforting on that first night. My group spent the next two days touring around the city while combating exhaustion from a day of travel, adjusting to life away from home and adjusting to living life with fifteen other girls. After two great days in Mexico City, we traveled for seven hours through the winding hills of Mexico to Oaxaca.
Getting off the bus in Oaxaca, I was scared. Big time. We literally got off the bus, got our luggage and walked over to a person with a name tag on and went away with them in a car. That was it. In the taxi on the way to my new home, my Mexican Mama, Ruth, realized that I spoke zero Spanish which made for a silent car ride and an awkward first dinner of us passing my translation book back and forth. But, we survived! I am very grateful that Ruth has another student, Remy, a girl from Boston, living with her so Remy can help translate when I am really stuck!
Since our arrival in Oaxaca we have spent the last four days in school. Learning Spanish, acquainting ourselves with the town and trying to get a grasp on Mexican culture and traditions. It has been a busy but very fun week!
There are many differences between my day to day from home to Mexico. Mainly, I am adjusting myself to a different timetable, where the main meal of the day is at 2:30pm, meaning we all go back to our houses smack in the middle of the day before (usually) returning to school or to the center of town. As well, I have been walking a ton (on average 1.5 to 2 hours per day) which I am loving!
I have been blown away by how much I love Oaxaca and this amazing program I am in. I am so grateful that I have this opportunity and am hoping I make the most of it in the coming weeks!
Tomorrow, I am off to an organic market in the morning and to a party at my professor’s house in the evening. Sunday will bring loads of homework!