Ok, last night in Puebla.  Have to admit I’m REALLY ready to come home.  This has been a VERY interesting and valuable lesson in so many ways.

street1On the good side, it made me appreciate how hard your average Mexican has to work to just get by.  They work between 56 to 72 hours per week.  Typically work for 6 days a week and get by on less than $2,000 PESOS (like $150-$200) per month.  That’s if they can find a steady job.  No real healthcare of any quality, not many rights unless you know someone.  Infrastructure is lacking at best.  Guess there’s a reason stuff is SOOO cheap here.

Also enjoy the leisurely pace here.  No one is in a hurry.  Conversation and taking your time is EVERYTHING.  Everything is about family and friends.  Work and other things have to come in a distant second and third to conversation, family and friends.

On the negative side, it’s shown me how REALLY BAD my Spanish is compared to a native speaker.  street2I count myself at this point as a FUNCTIONAL TOURIST at best …. “where can I find” ….. “can you help me with” ….”can you recommend something” …. “more beer” …. that kind of stuff.  I can usually say it right (and sometimes use the subjunctive properly) but when I get asked a question in the street by a native speaker I can typically only pick up a few works of it.  If you ask me something common, I may be able to answer.  If not,  you get kind of a blank stare from a white haired old guy looking back at you.

street3The big question is WILL I COME AGAIN …. and even WILL I CONTINUE WITH SPANISH.  Just not sure at this point.  Could not have had a better school experience.  SIP is a GREAT immersion experience.  The reality is you can not believe HOW COMPLEX a language is and how hard it is to be even slightly fluent in it if you are trying to learn it from the ground up.  If I continue, I will need to really commit and continue speaking constantly.  If not, it’s been a GREAT opportunity to learn a new culture, experience quite an adventure and try out some really great CHEAP local beers.

Until then.

Ahhh Mexico.