Life is loud in Mexico. The people are welcoming and eager to help. The music is soul-stirring, from the salsa to the live mariachi band singing at the top of their lungs around every corner. And the art is bold, passionate, and filled with vibrant colors. The food spicy with habanero chilli sauce at every table just in case you need more flavor. The whole landscape is so vibrant and alive that you can’t help but get into the groove of things quickly.
The beautiful thing about traveling is that you meet people from all over the world, not just the country that you’re visiting. And naturally you start comparing cultures and learn from each other. Europeans are shocked to hear that the average vacation time in the U.S. is two weeks. They get five to six weeks minimum. Norway even pays a stipend to students attending college. Someone tells me that they received two thousand dollars a month while they were still studying. There’s a huge value placed on education. Why aren’t we studying their systems more closely?
But I digress. Going back to Mexico, all the big companies in the US have gradually moved south of the border. I was a little disappointed to see a Walmart in Playa Del Carmen. Although there are still plenty of local shops but I wonder how long that will last. On the positive side, it was not too hard to find “vegetariano” food. There’s more awareness amongst the decent restaurants in town. Yoga is also considered the new in-thing, so it’s actually been nice practicing every day.
In a couple of days, I start moving South to Belize. The following two weeks will be the biggest travel period before I settle down near Lake Atitlan in Guatemala (known as a major energy center for the Mayans) for a yoga and meditation retreat.