el amor

flashing back to my high school years, i vividly remember my excitement at signing up to be a foreign exchange student for a summer. i also vividly remember my disappointment at being assigned to go to paraguay, rather than spain as i’d so earnestly hoped.

sometimes life has a funny way of giving you just what you need, because my summer in paraguay turned out to be a seminal experience for me, which i wouldn’t have traded for anything. not only did it spark my lifelong love of travel, but also my love of español and latin culture. i remember coming back from being abroad with a lightbulb over my head, thinking, “ahhhh, so that’s what i am going to do with my life – something with spanish and travel. perhaps an international aid worker, or diplomatic interpreter…” i was convinced that spanish would become an integral part of my future.

of course, life rarely works out the way you think when you’re 16. somewhere along the line, obstacles cropped up, priorities changed. and it’s now been 17 years since then.

still, i am in the throes of remembering how it felt to fall in love with a language and a lifestyle. there is something about spanish which has always felt like a second skin – the more i find myself immersed in it, the happier i am. being able to navigate through a non-english world is a secret sense of pride – it’s like having a second home, or being a member of a club. and as a traveller, it is the difference between real interaction with a strange culture, and gawking it at from outside. and for most of the trip i’ve only ever been able to do the latter.

so maybe i didn’t end up living in costa rice teaching english, or working with street kids in mexico city, or acting as an interpreter for a UN official. still, it’s a great feeling to discover that no matter how far you stray from your passions and dreams, the love is always right there below the surface, just waiting to be reawakened. and it’s as easy as a visit home.

2 Responses to “el amor”

  1. daddio
    August 22nd, 2006 02:05

    el red sox son terrible. los cinco juegos fue un masacrar. lo septembre ortra ves.

    para tenir un ortro idioma es un regalo.

    vaya con dios.

  2. Dave
    August 22nd, 2006 17:33

    si…sox de red sucking

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