There is a part of me that says it’s time to settle down in one place. I often think it might be nice to have one home again. I could have houseplants and a dog again.
But then there’s that other part of me that says I’m not getting any younger. The time to travel is now while I have my health.
I came to Mexico almost ten years ago at the tender age of fifty-eight after having lived my entire life in one city in Canada. Teaching ESL here meant assimilating into a new culture and learning a new language.
The huge bonus was the opportunity to travel. Christmas break that first year I found myself on El Chepe and an amazing train ride in the Copper Canyon.
Over the years I have lived in different areas of the country. I have visited art galleries, museums, botanical gardens, canyons, pyramids, churches, beaches, parks and zoos. I’ve celebrated Independence Day, mesmorized by the throngs of people gathered to hear the gritto and watch the fireworks. I have visited cemeteries in different places for Day of the Dead although I admit that my favorite place is Tlaquepaque for this holiday. The parades and festivities in Mazatlan for Carnaval are awesome and I went on a cruise one year to view the fireworks.
But it’s the people I’ve met along the way that have enhanced my life here. It’s the friendships we’ve developed and the experiences we’ve shared that have contributed so greatly to my enjoyment of this beautiful country.
I have taught with teachers of all ages from all over the world. I admire the younger ones who gain a far greater education from traveling and working in a foreign country than they would ever get from a classroom in their own native countries. When I was their age I never would have dreamt of such a thing.
COVID-19 has certainly put a damper on my travel plans this winter. I didn’t get to Mexico City to see Angie and her family. I didn’t get to Cuernevaca to see Elsa. I didn’t even get to the beach in Puerto Vallarta or Mazatlan this year and I’ve been here for eleven months.
But mostly I regret that I only got to Culiacán once to see my family. And I don’t know when I’ll see them again as I’m leaving Mexico later this month and am not sure when I’ll return. Until then video calls will have to suffice.
I guess this is still my mantra.