Since I can remember I’ve always had an itch to not only see the world but wonder it and socialize with different people, as well to try different and strange food. This is why I not only admire but look up to the one and only god of mine Anthony Bourdain. After watching what seem to me his entire traveling journey on TV.
I had decided to take a shot at reading one of his best known books Kitchen Confidential. All I can say is that it not only blew my mind but opened it as well. About two years ago my family would have told you that I lost my mind due to a random traveling decision that I made. I wanted to feel and see what was outside of the norm of my day to day life.
My journey started with Puerto Rico and yeah some people may think it’s like traveling to South Beach in Florida. But no I decided to stay in the mountain country side of it. I stayed in a small hut up in the mountain area no AC or hot water and of course no reception. Meaning no I phone usage, no wifi and the worst of it all no facebook or instagram bummer right. Not really if I wanted to experience what it felt to be an actual living citizen of Puerto Rico, I had to do it right. The first night sucked just because I’m so use to entertaining myself with my phone at all time.
It was crazy seeing so many stars and hearing silence at night. But one thing that I did admire so much about the Puerto Rican culture was the peacefulness that they carry with them. It looked to me as if everyone was as ease and without any stress. Even as I notice people working and living their regular lives, just happy. What was amazing was actually seeing people hold actual conversations with one another and no phone were seen anywhere. I grew up knowing that once I became an adult that it would be my turn to take care of my elderly family members.
But nothing was more culture shocking till my experience in Honduras in a small city named El Progresso. It brought me to tears to see how young poor adults worked so hard to just make sure either parents or grandparents were well taken care of. It made think how rich people in our society are so quick to send off their parents to nursing homes. Religion was something I wasn’t brought up with; we were more on spiritual side. As I traveled to Machu Picchu, I saw how much their culture respect their religion. It was weird how it would feel to walk into any open churches and you could feel something reflect off your body.
Something I won’t forget is the look in their eyes with so much hope as they prayed to their saint. It was hard for me to understand how you could hope your life off a statue. But it was such an amazing sight to see how different their culture was from mine. Trying their food was something out of my norm, their delicacies was eating a giant guinea pig otherwise known as “cuy”.
Pretty harsh especially coming from a different culture where these animals are kept as pets. Ending this journey was pretty sad it made not want to come home at all. After meeting such wonderful and good hearted people, I stop to think that yeah we come from such different cultures. But what is normal to them may seem odd to us and likewise.
But if everyone were to be taken out of their comfort zone and left to see and hear what’s out there they wouldn’t think its so odd. I sure did learn from all the different cultures I got to explore.
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