Finding Equilibrium

Upon traveling in the north of the country, where few foreigners exist, I found myself immersed in Spanish. My original idea of virtual total immersion was not as easy as I’d thought it would be.  My objective was to adapt a ‘When in Rome’ philosophy. I would eat, drink and live the local culture, and even make an effort to speak like a local.  But over a short time, I realized that this would be close to impossible.

There is no way that I can put myself in their shoes. My life experience up until now has been a whole different scenario. My language, culture, education, upbringing, access to information, and way of thinking has been vastly different.

No matter how many locals I’ve talked to, no matter how nice they’ve been, I’ve still found myself getting a bit lonely and not having so much to talk to them about.  Granted, these people are genuine, honest and humble.  I’ve had mostly pleasant interactions with Nicaraguan people.

Yesterday afternoon I arrived in Granada, the oldest colonial city in the Americas. It’s also probably the most touristy city in Nicaragua. In the same country, I’ve practically teleported from being around all locals to all tourists.

After drifting around the city center’s outskirts for a short time, I came across a hostel. Instead of opting for an affordable private room, I chose to sleep in a dirt-cheap dormitory bed. This proved to be a great solution to my loneliness. Staying in a dorm room provides extremely easy interaction with people. I have hardly checked out Granada yet, as I’ve mostly stayed in this tourist hangout talking to Europeans and North Americans.

I’ll get back to virtual local immersion again soon, or even better, try to find a happy medium.   Perhaps I’ll stay here for a few days, as I continue to find my equilibrium.


2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by darren on February 10, 2011 at 15:22

    Well said, I understand how loneliness can be felt in that situation. It was the same when I first arrived in Argentina. I attempted to avoid all tourists and foreigners so that I could immerse myself in the language and culture, but it got lonely at some point as it was not easy to communicate at the time. Fellow travelers were a good solution to my loneliness as well.


    • Yeah, all that said, I’m learning more about how important optimism is. If I perceive my travels properly, I can enjoy the great things and not think about the cons. A positive attitude will do wonders for anyone.


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