Published: March 31st 2012March 31st 2012
My friends are here! Well actually, one of my friends is here, and we’re going to pick up the other one from the airport really soon. I’m off from school this week for Semana Santa, so it’s going to be lots of fun.
As the school year is quickly coming to an end (I only have about about 2 months left), I really really have to start thinking about my plans for next year. I’ve been here in Roatan for about 8 months now, but it seems like so much longer. Assuming I don’t stay for another year, I really only have about 2 or 3 months left on the island. It amazes me how before I left I was thinking about how long a year is, and freaking out about living in a new place, but now it seems scarier to leave it then to stay. Thinking about living in the first world and having to negotiate noisy cities with huge highways, tall buildings, and organized public transportation is mildly terrifying compared to my quiet island life. Heck, trying to figure out a phone which does more than make phone calls is going to be difficult at this point. I’m now past all the initial culture shock- I’m used to the bugs and the geckos and having to walk down my long road to get anywhere. This isn’t to say that when a gecko falls from the ceiling onto my open oven door I don’t frantically start yelling “run for your life!!!” (by the way, no geckos were harmed in the end. Maybe just slightly singed), but in GENERAL when a gecko falls from my ceiling I don’t even notice. Except for this one other time when I was about to fall asleep and a gecko fell on my head. That I noticed. But this post isn’t supposed to be about geckos.
I’ve also gotten spoiled here- now “going for a swim” is synonymous with “snorkeling”. Plain, normal swimming will seem terribly boring after having routine swims over the world’s 2nd
largest barrier reef with all the accompanying aquatic life. My morning commute to work is a 5 minute walk down a dirt road where I frequently see Monkey La Las, Guatusas, geckos, cows, and dogs. Returning to NJ and doing some hour-long commute on a busy highway (since I assume that 4-lane highways still exist in the States, even though they definitely don’t down here) will not be nearly as nice. I also go to the beach almost every weekend, and go into withdrawal if I miss over two weeks. I’m worried about the ramifications of this when I move back to NJ where the beach is an hour away, and then it’s still the Jersey Shore and not beautiful tropical water with fishies and coral and turtles.
With that said, I know that I would appreciate a cultural change- for one, I miss classical music like whoa, and for two, while I have gotten used to it a bit, I’m still tired of the fairly rampant sexism and constant catcalls. Also, while I was never a big shopper, it would be nice just ONCE in a while to have the option to go shopping. Or even just go to Target.
So. Do I pack up my flip flops and trade the simple beach-bum life for consumerist America, reliable electricity, and safe drinking water? Or do I avoid the real world one more year and stay in my tropical paradise? Big decisions to be made! But this week I’m just going to enjoy the sand and sun with my friends. I’ll update after the break. Happy spring!
Like I said earlier, on my normal walk to school I usually see geckos and other cute animals. The other day I saw a decomposing cow leg on the road. Not cool. Even worse was that in the days to follow, said decomposing cow leg was removed from the road and hung on the barbed wire beside the road, and there is now a good 30 seconds of my walk where I have to hold my breath to avoid the stench of rotting cow.
You should also know that while writing this entry, "Should I Stay or Should I Go" was playing in my head. Since I know you care.