I remember arriving in LAX from Mexico City and hearing a group of girls speaking English. I remember thinking: “English? Hmm. That’s weird.”. I suppose that after hearing only Spanish for the past 16 weeks, being surrounded once again by English would be something to reacclimate to. The irony is that 4 months prior, we had landed in LAX from Portland. I remember boarding the plane for Mexico City and everyone around me was speaking Spanish. My initial reaction? “Spanish? Hmm. That’s weird.” Well, in actuality, my thought was more along the lines of: “Holy shit. What did I get myself into??”
After every trip, I come back with a new perspective and set of experiences. Don’t we all? This happened with study abroad. I thought I had it all figured out. Turns out I most certainly did not. I thought: “Yeah yeah yeah, I’ll go down to Mexico, take a few classes, make a few friends, come home, and resume life, business as usual.”
HA! Nope. That was not the case. At. All.
Little did I know how watered down my expectations were. I had no freaking clue how study abroad would be affecting me. Cliche? Sure. But it’s true! The love I would develop for the Mexican people/culture, the lifelong friendships I’d make, the ridiculous experiences I would have, the incredible host family I would adore. Yep, I certainly didn’t plan for any of this.
Which nicely brings me to my current thoughts. Panama. What will that be like? I’m so curious what this Panama experience will bring. What will the people be like? What is the weather like? What idiosyncracies will I notice? How will they treat me? What do they eat? What is transportation like? How will this experience affect me? How will I be different once I return? Or will I?
I guess we’ll find out soon. 2 week & counting!