Why I’m Heading Back to Mexico

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Toronto, Ontario

A few weeks ago I realized nearly two years had passed since I left to travel Latin America.

The universe works in funny ways because shortly thereafter I got an invitation from the Mexico tourism board travel to the Yucatan for 5 days.

I know 5 days is not a lot. Previously I spent 5 weeks in Mexico and thought I barely saw anything.

 

2010 – one last photo before I head to my gate

 

But it was too appealing to turn down. When I arrived in Cancun I did not speak a lick of Spanish and had no idea that how much my life would change, or how much I would change.

One of my biggest regrets about Mexico was not speaking the language because I felt like there was a barrier between me and the people.

Going back to the Yucatan feels right. In 2010 I arrived feeling excited but also very vulnerable as I literally broke up with my boyfriend outside the security gate.

It was an emotional first few weeks. I’m curious to see if my impressions will change or what I’ll notice that I hadn’t before.

I have always known I would go back. In fact I emailed Wandering Earl about living in Playa del Carmen over the winter because I didn’t think I could make it through the Canadian cold.

But money called when I had an opportunity to do contract work so I put my Playa del Carmen plans on hold.

Yet the universe had other plans for me and Playa is calling and I’m finally in a position in my life that I have started to listen to these little nudges.

 

I wanted to share my initial days in Latin America.

Below are my very first blog posts about Mexico. Some are a bit boring, not because Mexico is boring but I hadn’t found my writing voice yet. But they do set the tone for my return.

 

Yucatan Posts

Where to eat in Cancun
Is Cancun the real Mexico?
The (Yawn) Tulum Ruins
Where to eat in Tulum
How do I get to Chichen Itza before the tourists?
A bowl of awesomeness: sopa de lima
Where did I sleep last night?
Mexican pubs – not so much like Irish ones
Campeche at night
Have you met the Casanovas?
Must-try street food in the Yucatan

 

Other posts from Mexico

The night a laptop saved a meltdown
Meeting an old friend at the Palenque Mayan Ruins
Lovely but lonely Oaxaca
Have you met Whatsherface?
Mexico isn’t all lemons and limes
Where to eat in Oaxaca
I love a parade
Have you met Tupac?

 

That was all two years ago. I don’t know if I’m any stronger or better now but I do know I am different. I wonder if Mexico has changed.

 

 

 

 

Join the Conversation

  1. Yu gotta love your life right now! Good balance!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Let’s hope I can keep it going!

  2. A Cook Not Mad says:

    Yay! Have fun!

  3. This is amazing. I’m curious to see what your observations will be upon your return to Mexico, where it all began.

    When I first found your blog, I went back and read some of your first posts, and enjoyed seeing how far you’d come with your writing voice, especially since I felt (and still feel) I’m in the midst of looking for mine.

    Best of luck, chica bonita. Que te vaya muy bien. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Thanks so much Michi, I really think in the beginning I was writing what I thought I was supposed to write instead of what was on my mind. I have always kept a journal and I was writing “official” travel posts on the site and my thoughts in my journal and then one day I realized I didn’t need to give tips or tricks but just share the thoughts that were in my journal.

  4. dtravelsround says:

    I can’t wait to read how *you* have changed!!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Oh wow that’s a lot of introspection. I can’t promise anything!

  5. I’m very interested to see how this goes…Enjoy!

  6. Should be an interesting return for you. Look forward to reading your take on Mexico two years later ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Isn’t it funny to go back and read old posts to see how your “voice” has changed? I almost sound bi-polar, because mine has varied so much in a year. Hope you have a blast in Mexico though!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Yes I’d like to think I’m more interesting now, at least I hope that is true!

  8. Cole @ Four Jandals says:

    Have only been to Mexico for spring break one year with some American buddies of mine. Pretty crazy and would love to go back away from Cancun! Can’t wait to see what has changed.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Really only Cancun? You must go back and see more of the country which will make Cancun look like a caricature of Mexico.

  9. Meg | One Love Meg says:

    Have a blast in Mexico! I think you will enjoy even more now.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I’m hoping so, at least I can communicate and not just point!

  10. Stephanie - The Travel Chica says:

    I wonder if your Spanish will come back to you.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      That is my biggest fear! I have noticed that my Spanish is really slipping and I am forgetting a lot of words.

  11. That last photo is enough reason to head back.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Beach time in the middle of a Canadian winter is very much needed.

  12. but I hadnโ€™t found my writing voice yet.

    Very honest. Thanks for sharing.

  13. You’ve tranformed your life and the five day return to Mexico was a reminder of all you’ve accomplished and how far you’ve come. I’m so glad I met you.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      You too, the best part of traveling is the people you meet.

  14. I am soooo thrilled for you. It’s easy to ignore those inner voices when you’re paying rent and other expenses that come out of living a “typical” life. Enjoy and I can’t wait to hear about your journey!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Well you know now that I am back in Toronto I have rent to pay and I decided to only do freelance work instead of full-time, which meant much more flexibility to travel now but it also means when I don’t work I don’t get paid.

      It’s hard to get into the mindset that the value of travel is more than the value of a paycheque but it’s one I need to get into.

  15. Looking forward to hearing about the Yucatan!
    Have a wonderful time ๐Ÿ™‚

    (I’m going to have to catch up on your earlier posts this weekend!)

  16. I am so happy for you. I visited Playa last year for the first time and I would go back in a hearbeat. I just loved the vibe and the people. Plus, there is a lot to do around. I want to go back. Don’t worry about the Spanish. You can practice there.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I’m really looking forward to it, everyone has said they would go back which really says a lot about a place.

  17. Sounds awesome! Enjoy your return.

  18. Heading to Chiapas for a month in October. Never been to that part of Mexico. Really looking forward to it.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I love Chiapas, it has such an interesting history I’m sure you will love it!

  19. Great for you! You will have a blast, and if you decide to stop in Puerto Vallarta (opposite side of Mexico) we can go surf a bit if you want!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I may have to delay that invitation a few months ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. I’m so glad you’re listening to your heart, Ayngelina!! What gorgeous photos. ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. Sounds great for you to go back to Mexico! My only time in Mexico was a quick border crossing from El Paso into Juarez in 2003. I had no idea at the time what a dangerous city that is, but luckily we didn’t stay long. I’d love to explore more of Mexico someday!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      What?? I guess maybe back in 2003 it wasn’t so bad but really don’t do that again.

  22. I would actually love to spend more time on the Yucatan. We were in Mexico for 3 months and I feel lacking. I couldn’t imagine 5 weeks! ๐Ÿ˜›

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Well I should restate 5 weeks total in Mexico – not nearly enough time at all. I could have spent the entire 18 months there.

  23. Nicole (colehaber.com) says:

    That is such a cool thing to do. It will be so interesting to see how you’ve changed, the place changed and how your experience in general feels different. I bet your infinitely more confident about travel and uncertainty this time around. Keep us posted!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      That is an amazing photo Nicole.

  24. Looking forward to reading on about how your time in Playa was. I lived there for five weeks so it’s definitely a place I got to know well and love. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I didn’t realize you were there for so long. I should have talked to you when I thought about living there over the winter.

  25. Assuming that you haven’t just broken up with somebody at the security gate, I’d say it’s already looking like a better trip.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Haha Laurel – yeah I guess this trip is looking a bit better. I’m alone but at least not starting it off so emotional.

  26. Jeffrey Willius says:

    Hey Ayngelina — So how’s your Spanish going now? How are you brushing up?
    I’ve found that learning Spanish has opened up so many doors for me, enabling me to experience my Latin American travels in new ways. ยกQue le vaya bien!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Spanish opened a lot of doors for me and after 14 months I was so much better. It’s nice to return knowing that I have improved.

  27. Should be a really interesting trip for you. It’s amazing how returning to a place it can still feel like you are arriving for the first time. You will see it all with new eyes, I’m sure. Look forward to reading about your return to Mexico.

  28. Amanda @amandaelsewhere says:

    I love the idea of a life of travel coming around full circle and I very much enjoyed viewing your old posts from Mexico (especially the food ones!) Have so much fun in the Yucatan!

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