What started off as a terrible morning, filled with tons of frustrations with my class and program, was quickly turned around by a quick vent session with my best friend and big. It’s crazy how talking to someone who means so much to you can completely turn around your day 🙂 I am forever grateful for all she does for me and for all the amazing days she has helped me have even when we are no together.
The concept of a waste of time is one that should be rid from someone vocabulary when he/she are abroad. Today I was going to get bus tickets for our trip this weekend.I had checked the name and location of the bus station a million times. I checked with people who had gone last week. And I felt pretty competent in my ability to make the trek and it was very easy (bus to taxi, taxi to bus).
My roommate was on Skype with her boyfriend who she rarely gets to talk to due to an 8 hour time difference and so I said I had no problem going by myself. I’m sure you all know where this is going – you know I never have easy trips. Problems started when the taxi driver didn’t know where the stop was. Then, when I finally made it to the station (which ended up being the same one we went to for another trip) it turned out you couldn’t buy tickets in advance. Thanks web articles. Talking solely in Spanish, I tried to communicate with the bus workers about buying tickets and making sure this was the only station to leave from. After getting the same answer over and over again, I decided it was time to give up and go home with complete confusion on how my friends bought their tickets early. Usually at this point, I would have been extremely mad about my time that was wasted with this trip, but instead I choose to look on the bright side and check an item off my Costa Rican bucket list: “exploring/traveling” around by myself here – sorry mom, promise I was safe about it. Additionally, I now knew the best way to get to the station on Friday. 2 bonuses from a rather unsuccessful trip.
Fear is the number one thing that holds us back, and when you say “yes” to things that scare you, you take back control of your life and open yourself up to infinite new experiences.
I’m type a. Don’t get me wrong. I like having a nice and best schedule, being very productive, things being on time and taking only the slotted amount, and things making sense. But when you’re abroad you can’t think like that. If you do, you’ll not only be frustrated day and night, but you’ll miss out on some of the best experiences. This might get annoying to some people on the trip worried about safety or logistics, but just let it be. If you keep a positive attitude and let all the frustrations go you’ll end up with a memory you’d never expect. Its pretty cool how things end up working out for the best.
The day continued to improve with an amazing dinner, it seems my Mama Tica is finally back to being herself even though another family member is sick. During dinner we got on the topic of the exercise parks in the neighborhood, so after dinner we took a walk to explore. After 10 weeks of being here, I just found out about these. It’s so comical how you can be in a place for a long time before you find out about spots that could easily become your favorite. For instance, the second park we went to is on a hill and has a great view of city. I am sure it is an amazing spot for watching sunrise and sunset (this is now on my roommate’s and I to do list). This evening was filled with so many laughs trying out all the different exercise equipment and I was so happy to finally get my Mama Tica out of the house. She seemed to get so much more energy, it was heartwarming to see!
Tonight, things got real when I realized I only had 2 weeks left here. Where has all the time gone? I may never understand why I am served potatoes and rice in the same meal and why there are no street signs. I may not be able to completely rid myself with frustration for my program or travels here, but one thing is for sure: I am so sad it’s all coming to an end. I seriously can’t fathom how I only have 2 weeks left in this fabulous country. My life has completely changed since I came here 10 short weeks ago. I still remember how awkward it was the first day: my host mom and I sat for 2 hours trying to communicate without being able to speak the language. And now, while we still can’t have in-depth conversations without translation help, I have learned so much from her, from her family, and from this country. It’s amazing to know when I leave, I’ll always have a family and a place to stay in Costa Rica. It’s a constant motivation to learn spanish in order for me to be able communicate on new levels with my family.
Coming full circle: you never know what you can experience until you take a step outside of your comfort zone and being vulnerable.