Orientación Fulbright

Currently, I'm on the second floor of my hostel in one of the lobbies, Mexico City Hostel to be specific. There's this couple on the sofa to my right reading a novel in Spanish. She's foreign I believe but her special friend is reading to her out loud in a very poetic seductive voice. I'm hungry and I may walk to the 7-11 down the street before going to bed. The others Pete, Victoria and Mari are already asleep. Today we did a lot of walking around Chapultepec Park, then to the zoológico to see all the depressed encaged animals, taking their portraits of course, and later to meet up with the marcha ¨Iluminemos México¨ contra la inseguridad y violencia. (Y Aquí tienen un video clip de la manifestación en YouTube) Apparently they feel Calderón isn't doing enough to squelch the "desorden." Everyone sported white attire to show solidarity and so we couldn't help but join in. Naturally it seemed like a good cause (who isn't against violence?). However, it did seem odd to us that a good percentage of those silently protesting seemed to be of middle to upper-class. At one point we passed a spectator standing off to the side holding a sign made of cardboard that said, ¨The worst form of violence is economic violence.¨

A lot of images exported to the states through movies, the news or heresy a lot of times get it completely wrong because this city is a pretty amazing place (and I don't mean to discredit all the positive perspectives). Of course one cannot deny the violence or crime rates, hence the aforementioned manifestación, but I say don't let that be the motivating factor to erase Mexico City off your list of places to visit. I even wish that I would have been placed here instead of Acapulco so I could really get to know D.F. The good thing is that it only lies about 3 hours away via Carretera México-Acapulco.

Usually, I'm not one to obsess over food and how such and such spice mixed with such and such random vegetable put together with whatever meat was so amazing and emblazoned my taste buds BUT... the tacos here are, and Judson you would appreciate the usage of this word, delicious. Down the street here by the hostel is a nice little place, frecuented by many, which is a very good way to tell if Moctezuma will have his revenge or not, sells tacos de adobo, papas, frijoles y no sé qué más. Then on each table was a mix of guacamole y salsa, no me acuerdo del nombre, but although hot very good. They cost about 3 pesos each. Needless to say I don't have to worry too much about the relationship between my hunger and my bank account, I can be a bit less frugal (cheap).

I know that I started this blog talking about "Tonight..." or "This night..." but that was a few days ago seeing as I've been a little lazy about writing. So currently I'm sitting next to Mari, Pete and Victoria and we all have our laptops out in the dining area. Several other fellow hostel-ers have commented that we look like Starbucks, oh well. We're just passing around photos, updating blogs, sending e-mails before our last day tomorrow in México (that's how they call Mexico City for short in México) when we have our official orientation.

In future blogs I'll try my hardest to match as much as possible words with pictures thanks to the wonders of blogging or photo-blogging. Or maybe I should just concentrate on writing at least once a week on here tanto en inglés como en español, aunque no entienden todos wups.

This photo was taken on the last day of the optional orientation, Friday el 29 de agosto 2008, of just the English Teaching Assistants, a whopping 4 (sorry Areen!).


New Journeys

My time in Bowling Green, Ohio came to an end this week on Monday, the 11th and admittedly I was a little sad to say goodbye ...not so much to the town but maybe to the memories of the house on 518 Leroy Avenue, my roommates with whom I spent my year abroad in Guadalajara, friends that I made while studying in Alcalá de Henares, Spain during the summer of 2007 and those I met back on the campus of BGSU.  It feels as though many things have came full circle in my life, such as returning back to Alcalá last summer and living with the host-family that hosted me 4 years ago, being back here in D.C. to pick up Mike for our road trip back to Tucson and, lastly, my Fulbright grant which will take me back to México, albeit a different region.  Moreover, today I ate lunch with Alma Luisa, an old friend from Tucson and former CatCrew partner, who currently is employed with a women's hispanic magazine.  On my way back I ran into my friend Genesis' ex-boyfriend Chris who looked completely different from what I remember (I met them while I was attending American University Fall Semester of 2005).  It just seems that a lot of things are taking on a theme of repetition, and not in a bad way.  Definitely, I could picture myself living in D.C. and I'll keep it in mind after finishing my grant in Acapulco. 
So our road trip officially begins tomorrow morning, the 16th of August, 2008, as we head off to Atlanta, Georgia to stay with my friend Tre for two nights.  This is a city to which I have never had the luxury of visiting.  I look forward to experiencing it, especially since Tre has talked it up so much.  Hopefully, I can provide photos to post to perhaps convince others of what I conclude about the city.