I have been living in Mexico city for more than a year now and every day I encounter something new that surprises me. I would like to tell you about it.
If you are planning to move to Mexico I advise you to relax, let go of all your ideas about how something should work, should look, should be and be ready to embrace its surreal and marvellous culture. The worst thing that you can do for yourself is be a control freak in Mexico City. It would help you a lot if from the very beginning you accept that everything is different here and even almighty common sense is fading when it meets with Mexican reality.
- Only here you can ask for some bread at the beginning of your meal, and get it after you finish your dessert.
- Only here the most important reference point of your address is the color of the building.
- Only here instead of using indicators they shake their hands out of the window
- Only here they shout numbers in the bank, although there is a queuing machine which works for an unknown reason and shows completely different numbers.
But I believe that in spite of the challenges that you would deal with on a daily basis while getting used to the new culture you will be thankful for the unforgettable experience that will dramatically broaden your perspective on the world.
Will the famous ¨Ahorita¨ chase you everywhere you go? Despite the fact that you`ve heard about ¨ahorita¨ or not, you will get familiar with this concept from your first step on this beautiful land. It may be confusing in the beginning, because “ahora” actually means ¨now¨, whereas it does not have much in common with it`s Mexican friend ¨ahorita¨. ¨Ahorita¨ can be now, in the next 2 hours or in the next days/weeks. Quien sabe..
Is it dangerous? Almost every expat that I know has been advised against walking in the evening, wearing jewellery and taking random taxis on the street. While the last is still a valid point, the first two depend a lot on the situation. Mexico City is not as dangerous as it used to be thought. I feel safe here most of time, except when Waze brings me to a narrow, unknown, dodgy street to avoid traffic. There are some places to stay away from like Tepito, although even they are becoming a popular attraction for tourists looking for adventure. I do not see much sense though in going to a place which even Mexican taxi drivers don’t recommend going to. So you are safe if you don’t take risks on purpose and keep a low profile when you are out of the foreigner favourites Condesa/Polanco/Roma/ etc. zones.
Is it a desert and the only plants are cactuses? I was arrogant enough to believe that Mexico was a desert before coming here. Now I am living in a very green neighbourhood: Condesa. There are all kinds of beautiful trees around. I know I am lucky to live in the area because the majority of city’s districts are a good illustration of a concrete jungle. The climate here is the best climate that you can think of. Most days of the year are sunny and around 25 C. Summer is the rainy season but the good thing is that rain starts at the same time every evening 5-6 pm, it cleans and refreshes the city and next morning it is sunny again. I should mention that there are 3-4 cold weeks per year, otherwise Mexicans would say that I am a crazy Russian who has lost her sensitivity to the cold. There is no central heating in the houses so it does get cold inside when it is cold outside.
I should probably stop here, so that my post won’t become too long and boring:) I will continue sharing my experience with you in the next one. Thanks.