The Logic Behind Moving To Mexico
When people ask “why Mexico?” we usually say something smart like “Because it’s fun!” Which is true, but doesn’t really help anyone understand.
I wrote an earlier post on this, but the reasons get jumbled up in the mad preparations and I never know what to say, so Jason and I sat down for a brainstorming session trying to find an answer to the question. We were looking for the elevator pitch version, the one that makes sense and helps people to “get it.”
Here’s what we came up with:
To learn Spanish.
We have been working on our Spanish skills here at home, but once we are surrounded by it we’ll learn much faster. The kids are so excited they’ll probably be fluent in a week. Being bilingual will allow us to understand the culture and people better, read the signs, take part in the conversations, and there is something magical about having words that were previously gibberish suddenly fall into place and make sense.
To experience another culture.
As an example, when we go out to dinner I like to watch other people, and here in the states the televisions in every restaurant and tablet in every diner’s hand is making it a very boring show. Mexico is more people oriented; often relationships are considered more important than being on time (hence the complaints about Mexicans never being on time.) There is nothing like learning how others live their lives…and I think I should have studied anthropology.
To show our children a global perspective.
There is so much beyond Iowa, and it’s so much more fun to learn about it in person instead of through books alone. Mayan ruins are a good place to start for my budding archeologist June, with Greece and Rome to follow in a few years (thanks Percy Jackson!)
Because we want to do it before we’re old and can’t.
My parents are in their 60’s and they are out of money and out of gas. Sad but true. Not very long ago Jason’s aunt suddenly died at age 40. I will be 40 next year. Things like this are wake up calls, and we aren’t willing to put off until “someday” the experiences we want and hope that we’re still up to it when the time comes.
To bond as a family.
People talk about waiting until their kids are grown and gone to do travel and enjoy life, but we want to do it with our children. Being away from the hustle and bustle gives us time to not only see the world but to share it, and that makes it so much more special.
We’ve also decided to try world-schooling the kids, meaning they won’t go to school but will learn from the world around them. Math at the grocery store adding up purchases, science at the beach poking through the tide pools, and I very much believe that if you can read you can learn anything. It’s amazing how much time school takes up, including bus ride time and homework, and I look forward to having my kids back.
To have a slower pace of life.
I am so tired of running all the time. We get up early, run the kids to school, they come home and we scramble to eat dinner and do homework with little time to just enjoy each others’ company. There are places in the world where the pace is slower, and we intend to find them and bask. Just bask.
To get away from cold weather.
This one is pretty self explanatory. Don’t get me wrong, I’d like to see Alaska before global warming melts it but right now I am sick of winter and need a few years of sun.
Lower cost of living.
We live cheaply here and we get by. We buy most things second hand, from clothes to furniture, and we try to pass things on when we’re done with them. I’m frequently shocked by all the excessive spending and waste that I see, and I want my kids to learn a different way of living without an emphasis on things. Living in Mexico we can enjoy ourselves more while needing less money to do it.
My own health.
Call it Seasonal Affective Disorder if you want to, all I know is that in winter I only want to hibernate and feel sluggish all the time. I need the sun. We’ve noticed that in Mexico I have more energy, I don’t have the usual aches and pains, and I just feel better mentally and physically. Being by the ocean fills me with peace, and we’re all more active. Plus there’s the old saying: If Mama ain’t happy ain’t nobody happy, so this is a win-win for all of us.
Mexico is close to the U.S.
Cozumel and the Riviera Maya area are actually very Americanized, making it easier for new travelers like us to get along. It’s a good starting point and kind of a safety net. We can get back to visit on a quick flight and we’re within easy reach if anyone wants to see us.
What we realized making lists of reasons:
There is no sound, logical reason for why we want to move to Mexico. We want to make a radical change in our lives even though it is not necessary. I guess people will just have to understand that and it will have to be enough. Or they can come visit and see for themselves.
Have you ever done something drastic without a good reason? Tell me more!
I say phooey on getting old….keep physically fit, eat good nourishing foods, etc. Sure things are going to change…OH BOY have they already changed (i’m 40 this year), but I know people in the 80’s and 90’s that still travel extensively. At the same time, it’s ludicrous to put off travel to “someday” in the future. We only have today. That someday might never come and there is a lot to see! 😉
Exactly. We have known several people who died unexpectedly around 40-there are no guarantees, so we’re going to make the most of our time now!
I completely understand not holding off travel until you’re retired. We may not be able to do it or we may not even be around to do it when we finally retire. That’s why we’ve been dragging our kids around the eastern U.S. and Europe, because we’re determined kids won’t stop us from doing what we want to do. And yes, I bet Mexico is cheaper than the U.S. Even Iowa.
I came to North American when I was 23 to learn English, and ended up living here permanently. 25 years later I’d say my English is decent 🙂 Mind you, living in a foreign culture has its ups and downs, but if you love the place where you live and make some friends, it will be fine. Good luck with the move.
Jolanta it’s always good to hear from others that what we are doing is not crazy, because sometimes it feels that way! Learning a new languange and getting used to a new country is going to be an adjustment, and there will be rough days but I think the adventure will be worth it.
Looking forward to meeting you at WITS!