How far I am from the land where I was born, immense nostalgia invades my thoughts, oh land of the Gods, I think of you now that I am so far away.
I am about to finish one month having been away from my native land, the of the Gods, as the first Zapotecs called it, although today it is called Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca. Mexico.
I knew that when I arrived to the states everything would be different than what I had been accustomed to all my life. I knew there would be different kinds of food, that I would have to adapt myself to another culture and lifestyle. As my father said, “Your mom and dad won’t be there to do everything for you,” and he was right. Here, I do the work of my mother, and father.
Fortunately, I arrived with a formidable and grandiose family and I have felt very good with them and I can truly say that I feel as if I were in my family home. The people I have met have also treated me very well and the friendships I have made seem as if they have always been there.
My first impression upon arriving was to get into the car and be told that I had to wear my safety belt … I asked “Why?”
If I stop to think about the name “Safety Belt,” it’s purpose could not be more clear, however, disgracefully, in my town we aren’t accustomed to using it, and it was strange for me to use the safety belt.
Another impression was that when I walked just a few block from the house where I now live, there is an enormous quantity of road signs and signals in the streets. It’s marked where you are supposed to walk, and when there is a 1/2 inch gradient in the pavement, it is painted, saying, “Caution, Don’t Fall!” In my town it is very common to have a 5 inch gradient and if you fall it’s because you are walking distractedly, or wandering without purpose.
Another thing I admire in this country is that when someone goes to walk, or intends to cross the street, they can do it whatever moment, without import if there’s traffic or a car is coming near, because the car is obligated to stop for the pedestrian. If you cross the street like that in Mexico it is certain that the driver will sound the horn or roll down their window to yell so that you hurry as fast as you can.
These are some of my first impressions of being in the United States. Stay tuned to the blog, because new adventures await!