Saturday, September 24, 2011

el sabor de Mexico

The sound of Oaxaca cheese sizzling on a taco on the grill on the street, the spices, the Spanish floating to my ears; I can't understand much, if any. I am in Mexico. It is mucho bueno. It is so incredible, and so different, and so not easy to summarize into a small blog post. A taste of Mexico in my first week. 

Debido a que es tan hermoso que tiene que ser compartido.
Because it is so beautiful, it has to be shared.

Teotihuacan, Pyramid of the Sun.
The best friend, the blanca Mexican!
Zocalo, the centre of Mexico City, with Parliament.
A non-authentic Mexican day at Six Flags.
Traditional Aztec prayer and dancing in Coyocan.
 Who knows where we'll be next week. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

travel, journey, voyage, explore, backpack.

Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind. - Seneca

I'm sitting on my bed, in my room, in Canada, and I don't really want to be here. And tomorrow, I won't be. Nor will I be for the next three and a half months. Because I am going to Mexico and Central America! I have no idea where I will be in a week: the only thing I know is that at 8:05 p.m. tomorrow night I will have landed in Mexico City, quite possibly the biggest city in the Western Hemisphere (21 million people). I will be going for tacos with my long-time Fernie friends and my new Mexican friends, and on Sunday, I'll be walking through Teotihuacan.

Packing for such a trip has proven to be most demanding. I have a 75 litre bag, with the desire to only fill half of it. But, alas, that is impossible. I've tried desperately to cut back on my belongings: a pair of Toms, a pair of hikers, flip-flops, a sheet (for those nasty hostels with nasty sheets), soap, lotion, 6 pairs of underwear/socks, three pairs of shorts (one jean, swim, lulu), long johns (for those long nights in the highlands of Guatemala), two pairs of jeans (comfy, skinny, 'cuz a girl has to have her skinny jeans), my Loki rain coat, two shirts, three tanks, one long sleeve, an American Apparel sweater, eye cover (for dreary hostel sleep ins when I want to drown out the light), and nick nacks of medicine which includes: advil, aleve, cream, carmex, a knife, a lock, Immodeum (diarrhea prep) and Malaria pills. This is not all I have in my bag, but it's all I will include so as not to overwhelm those of you reading this.

I was nervous. For a long time. Will a bring the right things? What am I forgetting? Will I be safe? And now, I'm just so excited there are tingles passing through my veins and my mind is constantly invaded with thoughts of climbing Maya pyramids and surfing turquoise blue waters, of swimming with sea turtles and drinking tequila with the local senoritas!

There is nothing more exciting that not knowing where I'll be. I never thought I'd say that. Packing through Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama. All of them. Adios, Canada! Hola, adventura!

For my avid followers, I will be making a full-hearted time investment into blogging about the trip as it happens. They may be informal, short blogs, but if you are interested, follow along!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

good to have the sun on my face again

The water is so clear and so blue on my eyes that it makes me wish I could see underwater. Like a fish. Or a frog. Every time I make the hike up to Silver Springs, and ascend on the cliffs that overlook the lake, a rush of gratitude envelopes me. A deep breath in, a slow breath out, my eyes graze the lake that is so close to where I grew up. And even after what feels like hundreds of visits, the amazement remains.

A 23 foot leap off a jutting rock takes me deep into the water, but as I lean with my toes clutched to the edge, the jump I've done many times before leaves my heart thudding faster than it ordinarily would. And then I leap, and the water shoots up my nose, and I'm swimming in the deep blue to the surface where the sun warms my face. It's cold. I'm so completely at home. My own little Eden. Even if there are 30 others who feel just the same, now standing on the rocks above me.

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