Fitting into Mexico is not that easy, as many expats have discovered. That’s why I started my cultural training and coaching business and why I will be blogging on a variety of subjects related to integrating both culturally and socially for Expats In Mexico.
Six years ago, I set foot on Mexican ground for the first time. It was an amazing three-month experience that I will never forget. Filled with new tastes, smells, textures, colors and words. Oh yes, words! I learned to speak Spanish well back then, a skill that I have gotten better at over the years.
When I returned to Mexico, I embraced the Mexican culture, started a social life and began working for a big educational institution. Over the past few years, and now as a business owner, I have learned the skills necessary to flourish in Mexico. But the learning never ends when you live in a new country.
As a cultural anthropologist my passions are people, cultures and a love for helping others. That’s why I started my business, Ahorita Ya. I provide expats, and aspiring expats who will soon be living here, with the cross-cultural training and coaching needed to successfully integrate their lives, both culturally and socially.
Ahorita is a Spanish word for indefinite time. It derives from the word ahora, or now. In Mexico, the diminutives ita or ito are often placed after a word. The rule is clear: The more itas or itos, the more indefinite time will be. Ahorita may mean within a couple of minutes, but it can also mean a day, or never! YA also means now. This is the connection between my roots as a Dutch person and Mexican culture, and the misunderstandings that may arise from this. Ahorita Ya literally means now now. Often in contrast to the actions of someone from Mexico, someone from the Netherlands, for example, acts on those words immediately. This may lead to frustrating and funny moments, but it’s all part of the learning necessary to live in Mexico.
Even though it might take a while to understand the cultural parts of the Mexican Spanish language, I can assure you that you will get it eventually. The most important part is to begin speaking Spanish, to indulge in Mexican day-to-day life and to get rid of any fear or shame of talking to the Mexican people. You’ll see that you will improve a lot!
I am very much looking forward to providing you with information and tips on how best to integrate culturally and socially. I would love to hear from you if you have any questions or topics you would like me to cover in my blog. You can either post a comment after each blog or contact me via email.