Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Wednesday June 6th 2012 Day 2: First Official Day in Oaxaca
Last night was very tiresome but it was totally worth it. Today was very eventful, first we woke up early in the morning at our hostel, Posada Don Mario, and we had breakfast with Professor Guarnaccia downstairs. We had "huevos al la mexicana" which is Spanish for Mexican style eggs. I must say those eggs were the best eggs I've ever tasted. It was full of flavor and to top it off the beans that were served with the eggs made it not only tasty but filling. The ladies at the hostel were very nice as they served us breakfast and it made me wonder if every hostel is like this here in Oaxaca. Next we went for our orientation at the HUB to get an overview of the summer program, learn briefly the history about the history of Mexico, and learn about the recent healthcare reform that's happened here. Honestly, when Professor mentioned healthcare reform it reminded me of the ongoing controversy between the Democrats and Republicans in the United States. Professor made a great point today when he was talking about the healthcare reform that's happening here in Mexico. He said that economically universal healthcare is great because the economy will be excelling since everybody will be healthier. Personally, I am a supporter of universal healthcare and its not because I think its good for everyone. The reason I support universal healthcare because economically it will help the United States, life expectancy will rise, and people will be happier and healthier.  As an American I must say that I am disappointed in the United States because I feel that the concept of universal healthcare isn't explained clearly by politicians and the fact that no one wants to take the time to do research about healthcare reform for details.
Besides the healthcare reform issue another thing that makes me even more disappointed in the United States is the fact that its one of the richest countries but they don't provide fresh food unprocessed foods in our supermarkets. When I tasted the eggs and beans here in Oaxaca I immediately noticed the difference in taste and how I felt after I ate. Usually when I eat eggs back in the United States I feel heavy and very tired. However, when I ate the eggs here in Oaxaca I didn't feel tired at all I felt satisfied and ready to take on the challenges of today.
After orientation at the HUB, Professor Guarnaccia took me and my study abroad classmates for a little walking tour of Oaxaca. When we were walking down the streets of Oaxaca it reminded me of the time I went to Eritrea because alot of the buildings in Oaxaca are very colonial. Eritrea was almost colonized by the Italians so the buildings there have alot of influence from Italy just like Oaxaca's buildings are influenced by the Spaniards. I observed that there are alot of catholic churches in the area which I find fascinating, I'm hoping on one of my free days I can go to the church.
I did get to meet my host mother today at the hostel after me and my study abroad classmates went on the walking tour with Professor Guarnaccia. Her name is Socorro Pinelo and she is the sweetest woman I have ever met. When she took us to her house me and my classmates were mezmerized by how it felt like our home away from home. My room is like a personal suite because I have my own bathroom and bedroom and I have a view of the mountain that I saw on the way from the airport. I do admit that the anxiety I had earlier about interacting with my host mom for the first day died down because I managed to understand and use the little spanish I know to communicate my appreciation for her hospitality. I'm really loving the Oaxacan culture so far and I'm looking forward to continue expanding my understanding of the culture.

-Sofya Andemicael

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