Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Letters From America: Reflections

Hello Everyone, 

I'm almost halfway through my time in the US, which is quite sad. I've learned a lot of things and made a lot of friends. I've grown as a person, and discovered things I would never have realised about the world.

One thing I have learned to appreciate is a slower way of life. In this part of the USA, most of the native New Mexicans have a unique way of life, in that slower is always better. There is very little urgency when you need to get somewhere, a fact epitomized by the bus system. It'll get you places, just never expect to get anywhere in a hurry. It is nice in a way, you learn to appreciate the quiet, and not being too stressed. However, it can be irritating when you are stressing out about the amount of work you have to do, and you get told, 'just calm down', 'take a step back' or worse, 'take a chill pill'.

Another thing I have discovered is that solo travel isn't anything to be afraid of. Most of the time it will go okay and there will be no worries. If I can do it, anyone can. Just be prepared, and don't over stress about things. Getting to the airport three hours early for your flight will also help.

Don't be afraid to try new things. I always really tried to do things like this, but to completely submerge yourself in another culture puts you completely out of your comfort zone. All you want to do is hold onto your heritage as hard as you can and never let go. And in doing so, you will never let yourself really experience it. Just let go and go to everything that you can. Go for everything and anything.

You can't be everything to everyone. Just be yourself and you will help. Sometimes you have to say no to people, in spite of how bad you feel about it. People will not hold grudges if you have to turn them down once in a while. The first time saying no is the hardest, but it will get easier. Don't refuse people all the time though, because life will get boring otherwise.

You're stronger than you know. You've got more opinions and more beliefs ingrained in you than you expect, and you shouldn't be afraid to stand up for these beliefs. Nobody should make you feel inferior or stupid for believing in them, just because they're different from theirs. There are ignorant people in the world, and it is not your job to educate all of them. Just the ones who are open to new ideas and views. The problem is spotting who is open. But follow your instincts and they won't lead you too wrong.