Being a hockey fan in the heart of Honduras isn't easy. No ice rinks, no vacant parking lots, the streets aren't level and even if they were there is no one else to play with. I try to watch soccer, but it just isn't the same... and baseball is way too boring. Adapting to new cultures is always a challenge. However, I think I have a knack for it. When I spent almost a year living in New Orleans, after the storm, I learned a plethora of effective ways to settle into something new.
First, and most obvious, one needs to embrace the culture that they are living in. Second, it is always helpful to speak the language. I never ended up learning creole when I lived in Louisiana, but I did pick up a few words here and there. Also one needs the ability to filter the advise of others. When traveling or living abroad you meet a diverse group of people. People who study hard, people who drop out of school, people who yell in public, people who cheat on their wives, people who steal, people who relax after work. All these people will eventually start to move their mouths in such a way that they produce sounds. These sounds will form words and the words will start to resemble, what may seem to be, good or bad advice. I'm demonstrating this now with my keyboard... Imagine me verbalizing all this garbage... Got it? Good, let's move on.
The one thing that would really be helpful is a strong stomach. I was never blessed with this gift, yet I survive. Because of this I can say that strong stomachs are not a necessity when living abroad. I often take an alka-seltzer with my evening meals, it has become somewhat of a ritual. I find it important to eventually develop a routine. Like a domesticated animal, humans tend to function better with a routine. Get up, wash your teeth, put on your clothes, and so on. These things help distract us of the completely insignificant role we play in the universe as a whole. They help us focus on how we directly effect those around us. The people who typically live within thirty to fifty miles from our place of nocturnal rest.
So how do we effect those around us? Is it for the better? That isn't such a profound question, but it seems to occupy most of my time. More importantly, HOW can I effect those around me in a positive way? Once I figure out how... Will it effect the universe as a whole? So to help answer these questions, among so many others, I go to places like New Orleans, Comayagua and even my own back yard in South Wales, NY... To discover a way in which I can comfortably inhabit this earth.
I also met a really foxy chick here in Honduras and were getting married soon. Peace out, enjoy the blog.