Regreso a Guadalajara

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I’m back in Guadalajara after about 2 months off from everything – including blogging, whoops!  Although I had lots of ideas for Christmassy things, when the time came to it I just coudn’t be bothered to do anything, so instead I had some down time, just chilling out with my family, making a few trips up and down to Cardiff and readjusting to life in the UK.

I’m definitely getting used to changing up! I’ve been back in Mexico for a week but it feels like I’ve been back for much longer (but it will take longer still to get back into the swing of things at Uni!) It’s actually been a pretty hectic week – I had my first trip to a Mexican doctor (ended up spending the week in and out of the clinic) which turned out to be a lot simpler than I had thought, and the system here is very efficient!  It looks like there’s nothing seriously wrong so I can get back on track, and start going to classes properly next week.  I’ve chosen my modules for this term having a better idea of what I enjoy, so I’m excited to get stuck in! I’ll be studying History of the Mexican Revolution, Indigenous Culture, Teaching Spanish as a Second Language and a more general History of Mexico, as well as continuing with German.

Along the lines of changing up, it won’t be long before my housemates take off.  Two have already moved to Queretaro to be closer to family, and two out of the three remaining were only enrolled for one term, so they’ll be off home soon! I’ll definitely be sad to see them go and will miss the nights spent in “Fuente” drinking tequila and dancing to Mariachi.  But, I’ll soon be getting new housemates and hopefully making even more new friends.

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Now, as cliché as it is, I’m going to say it – I’m determined to make 2015 my year!  January has already gone SO fast, but I’ve made a start on a few resolutions – the usual one, to eat more healthily, is going pretty well.  Last term I was a bit apathetic when it came to cooking healthy meals for myself, but so far this year I haven’t eaten ANY pizza so that’s a start! Tonight I made a pretty good chickpea and mushroom chilli and I’ve recently discovered the wonder that is courgette “noodles” – honestly, better than pasta (although I’m definitely not jumping on the ‘no-carb’ bandwagon).  Finally, on the subject of health, I’ve signed up for a free taster session for a taekwondo class at a studio that also runs a yoga course – hopefully this yoga class will be more successful than the others I’ve tried.  And, once I get confirmation from the doctor, I can start training for the Great North Run half marathon in September.

It’s strange that in 6 short months my Mexican adventure will be over.  But I intend to make the most of every minute of those 6 months, see as much as I can of this amazing country and make as many friends as I can here, but also to work hard and write lots, because in 6 months I have to start thinking about being a proper grown up! But not just yet (:

Have faith & a burning desire to just keep on going no matter what happens  via: CUBICLE REFUGEE

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40 Vegetarian Days

Lent comes providentially to reawaken us, to shake us from our lethargy. – Pope Francis

 

I’m not religious and I don’t normally observe lent (and when I do, I usually cave within a week) but this year I’m doing something which I’ve been wanting to do anyway, so hopefully I’ll see it through to the end (and beyond).  Even though it’s possible to make a lifestyle change whenever you feel like it, I quite like the idea of starting at a designated time, especially since lent is seen as a time for renewal.  The first benefit I’ve noticed is that my housemate and my mum are both doing the same thing at the same time, so it won’t only be something for me personally but it will be something to share with them.  Since it’s meat that we’re giving up, I’m really looking forward to cooking and eating together, trying out new recipes and finding and recommending things we like.

I’m not planning to be permanently vegetarian, but even after lent finishes I hope to cut down substantially on meat and animal products.  It will be challenging, I do eat meat almost every day but I think the hardest part will be consistently cooking interesting, varied and satisfying meals (especially ones that will keep my non-veggie boyfriend happy), but I just can’t see myself missing meat all that much and dying for a bacon cheese burger by the time lent is up.

It’s not only the horrific things that go on in the meat and dairy industry that push me towards vegetarianism – it’s partly that, but I also believe it is a healthy choice as well as an ethical one.  On top of that, I can’t help but find vegetarian food irresistible.  Going into a butcher’s shop doesn’t exactly tempt you to buy, but seeing fresh, colourful fruit and vegetables on a market stall?  If only there was more room in my fridge.

The Big Picture

“People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed.”  Audrey Hepburn

“What do you want to do when you graduate?”

For a while now, I’ve been replying that I want to be a journalist, but my answer has been slowly diminishing to, “I want to work in the media” and most recently to, “I don’t really know”.  It’s never happened, but it scares me that one day I will say, “I want to be a journalist” and someone will ask, “well what have you written?” and I’ll have to shamefully admit that I haven’t written anything.

Since I told my mum that she was right and that I do in fact want to be a journalist, she started to ask me frequently on the phone, “have you written anything yet?” and after several failed attempts and maintaining a blog, I frustratedly told her, “I can’t think of anything!  None of my ideas are any good!”  Today, I got a letter from her along with a pile of newspaper clippings which she thought might inspire me, and one word in particular jumped out at me and gave me a ton of ideas.  Perhaps it’s because it’s exactly what I need, what I think a lot of people need, what I’ve been thinking about a lot (without realising it) and it fits perfectly with my life at the moment:

Revival.

The one word sums up everything that I believe in and want to write about.  It makes me think about personal development, which is what I always aspire to, learning new things, reading books, improving my health, physical and mental – by that I mean learning about and practicing what it means to be happy, opening the mind and being adventurous.  HEALTH and KNOWLEDGE are the aspirations for the future, but REVIVAL doesn’t stop with the individual.  Some of the other ideas that my mum mentioned were crafts like knitting and sewing and social ideas like having afternoon tea, baking cakes and letter writing, all of which brought another concept to mind: VINTAGE.  The idea of vintage has made a comeback over the past few years but in a way I’m not sure I like (hipster springs to mind) and although it’s now somewhat trendy to shop in charity shops, the ever-increasing reliance upon (and love for) technology means we don’t see much of the hand-written letter and most young people (however ‘quirky’ they claim to be) would laugh at the thought of wearing a jumper knitted by Nanna.  I just think that’s a shame.

So, that’s the main gist.  Expect mostly ramblings about day to day life, rants and raves from my housemates and my family and some little things that mean a lot.  It’s all about discovery and realisation coming from someone just trying to find their way, like everyone else.

Travel Quotes ('Put down the map and get wonderfully lost.') - A3 Art Print. $19.00, via Etsy.

http://www.etsy.com/listing/118680433/travel-quotes-put-down-the-map-and-get