18.5.12

My Neighborhood

Living in Mexico

I have been living in my neighborhood for three years now. It is an uptown area in Xalapa, the capital of the State of Veracruz in the south-east of the country. It used to be a pretty sleepy place. I remember from my first visit in 1992 that it was a residential area. At that time there were no shops and hardly any traffic.

By now it’s bustling with activity. Which I like just fine, since I can do all my shopping within a 5 minutes radius walking distance.

And it feels really comfortable to be a part of the community. There is the baker, the cobbler, the person who sells the different cheeses, the pharmacist etc., and me, the teacher. I know everybody, and everybody knows me.

Mind you, as in any other country, it didn’t happen over night. However, once ‘they’ get to know you, they are very accessible, always ready for a chat, ready to return a smile, ready to be friendly.

It obviously helps that I speak Spanish fluently. If you are thinking of migrating to ‘México mágico’, learning Spanish is a must.

The upside is that it isn’t really that difficult to learn. 

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