Sunday, March 13, 2011

wondering. wandering.

It seems amazing to feel like another traveling chapter is coming to a close. There is still time left,  but I am getting ready to leave San Pedro and start moving toward Cancun where I will fly out of. The time here has been interesting in so many ways. It has been really good for me to spend time with people who are traveling for short and long terms and some who have made a whole life in another country, just to see what it looks like for other people and how it might (and might not) look for me eventually. So many thoughts go through your head when you just have time to think. Long bus rides are one of my favorite ways of just sitting and thinking. It's hard to get yourself to sit still and just hang out in your brain when you have other options, but when you are on an 8 or a 12 hour bus ride all there is to do is hang out with your brain. I will miss that when it isn't as easy to do.

I leave San Pedro this coming week. I was initially thinking that I would go work in a hostel in Lanquin that we spent some time at a couple weeks ago and they really needed some help but I called them and they have everyone they need right now so hopefully that will still work out for a while in the future but for now I'm not sure what I'll do when I leave here. I think I will go up to that part of the world and spend some extended stays in small towns that tourists hardly ever make it to. The other side of the pendulum swing from San Pedro and I really love that scenery and climate. Oddly, very few people there speak Spanish as they still primarily speak their native languages so it will be fun to go back to that place of not being able to easily communicate.

This weekend I am spending with some friends I met in Xela in a town across the lake from San Pedro and it has been wonderful. They are such smart and lovely people and we've been having lots of conversations about aide work in the world in general and what it feels like and looks like for each of us specifically and we're all getting smarter. I did some body work with Anna and it feels so good to be back in that healing space, it made me realize that I really miss being connected with people that way and realize that when you aren't with the people you know and love, you don't spend any time with people physically. Even hugging people hello and goodbye and just cause you love them. It's such an important part of being human.

Thinking about coming home. About where I might like to live and what I might like to do to make money. How long I might like to stay, where I might like to go next. Wondering, wandering. Noticing how much I am affected by my environment and the people I am around and the work that I am doing and really choosing intentionally. I think it would be enjoyable to work with the immigrant population and wondering what types of opportunities there might be for that, especially without formal education in those fields. Opening up the possibilities of where I might live in my mind. Not necessarily being attached to Portland. Probably Oregon, probably the Portland area, but maybe finally get a little further out into the country where I can step out my front door and take a walk in the woods. That old dream, coming back to haunt. Anybody wanna move to the woods and play cards?

Looking forward to seeing and loving on folks soon. Looking forward to the rest of my time here, curious about where it will take me and who I will meet.


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

catching up

Lazy lazy bones! Let's see, six weeks later. The biggest change is that I am living in a new town. It's just the one next door, but is completely different. San Pedro is a pretty big tourist town which is such a treat. I've been pretty strict with myself about living in small local towns and it is the lap of luxury to be where there are great restaurants and wifi shops and lots of English speaking. I've rented a house and slowly but surely am turning these empty rooms into a home. Some friends of mine have come down to live for a few months and are sharing it with me. It's really fun to have housemates and people to cook with and share with.

The center has been on vacation for the last month but when it starts up again I will head over there a few days a week to work with the kids. Like most aide organizations I have found, if you can manage to stay out of the politics and just focus on the people you're hanging out with then it can be pretty fun. Unfortunately for someone who is so organization minded, it is hard to not feel like you could just make it a little easier and better and to not give suggestions which nobody wants. Learning to hold my tongue until it is my own place and hoping to remember to be open to other people's thoughts and suggestions.

I am really enjoying spending lots of time with people who have been traveling the world for years and years and hear their stories and feel like I'm with people who's language I speak. Both literally and metaphorically. It has also given me lots of desire to strike out into other parts of the world. I have been so attached to South of the US because I already speak the language but hearing how easy it has been for them to get along elsewhere gives me courage. I am leaning toward an extended time in India maybe or perhaps the South Pacific islands. It will be interesting to see where the future leads.

I am looking forward to some traveling with Kent and Victoria. There are a few places in Guatemala that I would really like to see before heading out of here. I may also get the ganas (desire) up to head south to other countries in Central America for a few weeks. I have a few friends traveling through Nicaragua, El Salvador and Honduras right now so I look forward to hearing how those trips have gone and gain some traveler knowledge (easiest bus routes, good hostels, towns to skip etc). Guide books are awesome but never as good as this fresh fresh first hand knowledge.

Still planning on an end of April homecoming, so I look forward to seeing you all then.