The Adventures Begin!
On the airplane, it hadn’t really sunk in yet. I watched as we soared up out of the smog that is LA, and saw California recede into the distance, and into the past.
Within less than 24 hours of being in Mexico, I was already on a bus on my way to a small little paradise, Rincon de Guayabitos, with three cousins I hadn’t seen in at least 10 years. We got to stay for free in a charming little paint-chipping-off-the-walls bungalow because of a distant relative my cousins had. It was a beautiful place, and the beaches were virtually empty, save the strolling peddlers selling anything from fresh barbecued fish and shrimp to inflatable whales. Two small islands lay just a 15-minute boat ride away, where small pieces of white coral washed up onto the sands from clear, salty waters. At night we had us a good ol’-fashioned thunder and lightning storm that lasted till daybreak. The Coronas here cost more than I thought they would.
These three cousins I keep mentioning are actually considered to be my nieces here. That’s right. I’m an uncle while my only brother remains single and childless. And not just an ‘uncle’ of a few, but of myriads. There are 62 or so other fellow ‘aunts’ and ‘uncles,’ and if their children are my nieces and nephews…you can do the math. Viva la Mexico, baby!
I also found out how desperately I need to be fluent in Spanish. This became immediately apparent to me the second I stepped off the plane and started to walk past the customs official without getting my bags checked. I found out that I didn’t know as much Spanish as I thought I did, and that I remembered more than I thought I would, if that makes sense. Pero voy a estudiar mucho!
I live in a room in my aunt’s house in this small rancher-town of about 70,000 people, called Zapotlanejo (it’s about a half-hour east of Guadalajara, in the state of Jalisco). My Tia is a sweet lady with a very giving heart, and always willing to feed me, even after I say I’m full. It’s kind of funny, it’s like “living at home” again. If I’m going somewhere or if I’ll be back late, I have to inform her. It’s just kind of funny to have this again after years of independence.
Within a week of being here, I also landed a job as an English teacher!! I’m in training now, but I start the 1st of October! It’s at a private language school right here in Zapotlanejo, so I don’t have to commute or anything. I’m really excited that I get to mis-educate people this quickly!
Ok, this is long enough for a first entry—I don’t want to bore-out my audience this early in the game! Stay tuned, and we’ll be in touch. Also, feel free to come down to Mexico some time. The weather is warm, the food is good, and the people are nice. Viva la, baby!