Wake Up, People

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Hanging out with the complainers is a drag. First of all, I get some of the disappointment people get when they realize that Tuxtla isn’t a picture perfect postcard puebla. I remember my first week thinking that I couldn’t do this job. I understand their frustration over things that seem so simple to us at school, but aren’t a priority.

I get it. But here is my two cents (for what it is worth):

Have you been outside the city? Or even deeper into our communities? Have you seen what other people live like here? Because, quite frankly, my apartment now is nicer than the one I had in Alexandria.

We have floors. They might be tile. But we have them. They aren’t dirt floors or even slabs of concrete. We have walls–actual walls! They aren’t cinderblocks. They aren’t made of bamboo or logs and mud. We actually have a roof over our heads, electricity, and a refrigerator. Although we have water problems, we aren’t dying because we don’t have access to it–and we have someone to help with it at school!

Sigh.

Everyone says that they love San Cristobal (me too!). It’s really great! But it is nice to go there for the weekend. I like living away from the hoards of people, where I am just another tourist. I like that people remember me here, because I am not just another white face in the crowd. I like having Mexican neighbors!

Oh, and school? Well, it isn’t America (despite the name). So when you don’t have something you would have up north, improvise! We are so lucky–have you seen the government school beside us? (I kind of want to work there…) My heart breaks for the kids that aren’t even getting school here. They do exist. Yes, our kids are privileged–but it is better than the alternative. I at least know their basic needs are being provided. I didn’t even have that comfort in the States!

I guess what I am saying, is if you want the a “comfortable home” and experiences from America–go to America. I, for one, am happy and would prefer to not stand near your raincloud.

So there.

6 responses

  1. Hi,
    You make a very valid point. Ability to accept your surroundings the way they are is a lesson not everyone learns. It’s quite understandable if one complains for a week, because the shock is so great. Anything beyond a week (and I’m not talking about a humorous remarks here and there, but true negativity) makes for a very poor acquiantance.
    You might try this approach (be warned, it can cost you their budding friendship): every time they start complaining, you ask: what can you do to change it?
    I can’t guarantee a coherent answer, you might get a puzzled stare and a mumble, but when they say that there is nothing they can do, you can ask: what’s the point of complaining then?
    It’s a very direct approach and might not suit you, but it has worked for me: at least they won’t complain when I’m around 😛
    Good luck with breaking their grumpiness!
    Häli

  2. Hey, don’t knock cinderblock walls!! The “real” walls they have in housing here molds and mildews… my cinderblocks, they don’t! 🙂

    Glad you are happy there!

    • Ewww! I have nothing wrong with cinderblocks–although I don’t think my concrete walls are much better. Noise travels like mad! I did find out that if I put my iPhone on the concrete floor outside, the music is louder. 🙂

      Miss you!

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