With another week gone by, I feel myself getting more comfortable with life here in Mexico. Of course now, right before my very eyes, I only have two weeks left. Even still, I have had plenty of chances to see a few new things and try some new things out.
One of the first things that caught my attention (for me anyway, since this is the first time I have actually put this service to use in a while), was the cab system here in Mexico. I never took a taxi before, not even in the United States. It was a good experience to see how the atmosphere would feel like. It was kind of small (especially for me), but it was managable. It also gave me an oppotunity to see how busy the streets usually are. i believed I may have mentioned it already, but streets in Mexico are usually pretty busy, at least those in the city. I could see myself making the relation to a more busy city area like Portland or Salem. The atmosphere is not too different, but things tend to be more close together, rather than more spacious. It made me wonder how tricky the parking must be. The less spacious feel is also reflected in the driving. Everyone seems so close together, I frequently worry a collision will occur, but many of the people here know how drive quite well in these situations. It also makes me think about the history of the designs and what their purpose was for making the stores and houses the way they are. Plus, there is also the question of the requirements for driving and how much more demanding they must be compared to the U.S. The taxi experience also leads to the my experience in a busy mall-like complex in Mexico.
A friend and I went to this mall in Mexico, and I was taken aback by its own similarities, as well as differences to the malls we have here. It was interesting that we discovered a fairly large parking lot area down in the bottom, it looked a lot like the ones that I usually see at the airport and other large complexes with lots of people either visiting or working. Upon actually visiting the inside, the appearance was uncanny. Plenty of food courts, game/book stores, and even a cinema too. We went to the cinema to watch the movie “Minions” and it was my first experience watching a feature length film in a theater in a different country. Since the movie was from America, I was kind of expecting the movie to be in English with subtitles in Spanish (I believe some movies released in other countries are like that), but the movie actually was dubbed in Spanish, which I think was better for the experience in the long run. The theater and the counter were organized in a similar way, though I think we were placed in specific before actually entering, however where we sat was still our choice, I think this helps to control the sittings in the movie theater, and I think it is great for people to see if there are any good seats available, if not, then I am sure people would just choose not to go in the first place. The rest of the places had some good food, though I d would not quite say it fit the typical Mexican style, it seemed a little more American. Though perhaps malls are usually good at attracting the tourists. Thankfully going back home was not too bad, in fact the taxi driver usually charge fifty pesos, which is roughly the equivalent to a little over three dollars.
Speaking of home, we actually had a visitor from the Peace corps visit our place and he was apparently living in the same place I was living in the past. His experience in Spanish was impressive; I could almost mistake him for a native speaker, even though he is an American. He studied abroad himself in Spain for five months and has been living in Mexico for two years. It really makes me think about the difference in experience between me and him. I have been exposed to Spanish practically my whole life, but John, the young man from the Peace corps has this natural flow to him that helps to really blend in. I was honestly a bit jealous. However, he has been using his Spanish for years, I am only here for five weeks, and I will keep practicing myself. If there is anything I have discovered, it would be that I need to continue practicing, because as a soon-to-be Spanish teacher, I need to be better. Maybe I will follow John’s lead and live abroad somewhere for a few years to improve my own language. Only the future knows for sure.