The Travel Itch
So this winter break -- and college graduation! -- I've got the itch to get back to a Spanish-speaking country. Mexico's closest and thus cheapest.
Forrest and I had originally planned on driving down Baja California for the
bulk of break, but this fell through for various reasons. Our winter break
plans now involve visiting his family and mine, with side trips to Las Vegas
and the Grand Canyon. I'll drag Forrest into Mexico some other time.
Viajando Con Mi Madre
But I still want to hablar español. So I called up my mom and invited her to travel to Mexico with me this January. To my surprise, she agreed to a week of vacationing with me! We first looked at Chiapas, Oaxaca's easternly neighbor, where language schools are cheaper than elsewhere in the country. The Zapatistas had supposedly settled down in recent years, but now they may be rustling again in sympathy to Oaxacans' protests.
My mom definitely didn't want to tango with any politically unsettled states,
so I suggested San Miguel de Allende instead. With a large American expat
community and lots of middle- and upper-class Mexican vacationers, it should be
a pretty safe place. Added bonus for my mom: there should be more
English-speakers there than in your average Mexican town. I count this as a
mild negative, but I'll manage.
The school we're looking at is Habla Hispana. Their classes are a little large at up to ten students, but they are considerably cheaper than the local competition (which has comparable class sizes, surprisingly). Homestays through the school run $18 a day for a shared room; three meals daily included.
We're researching how much extra an open-ended return ticket will cost. If it's not outrageous, I'm hoping to arrive in Mexico without a firm return date. I would really like to stay in San Miguel as long as I want (and can afford), or have the flexibility to wander to other areas. We'll see how this aspect of the trip works out.
If any of y'all wants to meet up with me in Mexico, I'd love to see you! You
know you want to...