Adapt, Learn, Grow

(*Note: Originally published on Sunday, Jan 13 but apparently it didn’t work)

Hello again!

So here I am retroactively writing my blog because time flies when you’re having fun and it could not be more true now that I have spent just over a week* here in Cancun.

I have also been to Playa del Carmen (about one hour away) both weekends and Cozumel (a 45 min ferry ride from Playa del Carmen) just today with my father! It’s been a lot to take in but I’ve been mentally blogging and looking forward to a “time out” from all the adventure to publish my thoughts.

There is so much I want to write about, like the fabulous time I’ve spent with my dad, the house I am living in with two roommates (I moved in on Friday) and my school life but one blog post at a time.

Today, I’m going to discuss what I hope to gain from this wonderful opportunity in three areas of my life: academically, professionally, and personally. Here goes!

I took off on this adventure for many reasons but to summarize them I wanted to do my version of “Eat, Pray, Love” which I have cleverly renamed in a more literal sense to my situation “Adapt, Learn, Grown”.

Personally, I needed this retreat to save my soul (drama queen much?). I think there comes a time in everyone’s life where everything is just so mundane and you need a change, nothing makes you happy any more no matter how much it should, well that time was on my clock. Also, I’m a huge believer in astrology and being a summer baby (Cancerian of the Zodiac) I need the sun and ocean, it gives me energy…so winter always makes me depressed back home. This change of scenery, beautiful climate, and a new culture is something the doctor could not prescribe! I think it’s good for any body’s spirit and I am grateful I could make my great escape to this beautiful place.

It’s very important for me to become truly self-reliant and independent. Though I’ve experienced fleeting moments of wanting to go back home, I know you have to challenge yourself in order to discover all the potential you have within.

Being in alone in a different country I only have myself to count on, I must make my decisions using my best judgement because there’s no best friend here to cross-reference with or back me up if I’m in a jam, I have to adapt and go with the flow as well -which I’m having some difficulty with. Though I’ve lived in Europe before it’s completely different here, the laissez-faire attitude and the lack of mobility on your own (buses are not ideal or that easily accessible) makes you feel like you have shackles on your feet. Not to mention a) it’s WAY too hot to walk around, and b) it’s not pedestrian-friendly so I have to depend on my roommate who luckily has a car but he also works & is not my personal chauffeur though he is more than willing to help me out. Patience is a virtue. However, all of the differences have opened my eyes to see how fortunate I am for everything I have back home and the beautiful country I live in O’ Canada!  Moving on…

Academically, this opportunity will allow me to perfect my Spanish as well as formally learn to read and write as I realized in class this week, I am familiar with the material but I am missing the technical terms so it will take some effort on my part to do the work. My classmates have been helpful with my note-taking (as some teachers will deduct marks for spelling errors in your notes…yes they actually check that you’re taking notes..) my classmates and I will exchange English lessons for Spanish writing lessons. The business Spanish will certainly benefit me in my career. (Side note: I am also taking a basic french class which is a great refresher as I am already fluent but it’s been ages since I reviewed verbs and adjectives. Also, how small is the world that my teacher is from Quebec!)

Professionally, I aim to investigate international companies to see if someone could have an informational interview with me. Ideally, I would like to talk with someone from Coca Cola as the beverage market is huge here, since the water is undrinkable plus once you tire of water there are many juices and soft drinks to choose from, a lot of which are made by Coca Cola.    I will research other companies that do business with Canada too.

My dream job will allow me to travel (preferably somewhere hot), use my languages, and use my socio-cultural skills to enhance the companies business and client relationships. Maybe I’ll find future employment here in Cancun!

All in all, with just 9 days (*now 11 days) in the bag I feel positive about the road ahead and I look forward to navigating it and documenting it along the way!

I will definitely be seeking words of wisdom to keep me inspired and so for tonight,

Change and growth take place when a person has risked himself and dares to become involved with experimenting with his own life. 
Herbert Otto