Hello world!

Well, here I am. Jumping onto the blog bandwagon. Should be fun.

Here’s a little info about me:

I was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia (Southside, baby!).  I first came to Mexico at the tender age of 18, when I decided to spend a summer interning in Acapulco at an orphanage and a day center for street children. While there, I saw the great beaches and the tall hotels, and I fell in love. I wanted to study tourism!

The next step was finding a university. Mexican friends informed me that since Cancun is a popular destination that is still on the rise, that would probably be my best bet. So what did I do? Once back in the states, I googled “Cancun universities” and signed up for the first university I saw. Came to Cancun, took the entrance exam, went back to VA.  Waited.

One afternoon, my mom answered the phone and said, “Um… I think this is for you…” with a confused look on her face. The Spanish-speaking lady on the other end of the phone told me I was IN!

So in August I packed my bags and headed off for Cancun. My adventure began in a nice apartment where another girl and I each rented a room.

The next four years were TOUGH. Dealing with culture shock when you’re on your own at 18 is very traumatizing. But I did it. Last June, I graduated with a degree in tourism administration.

Today, I have established quite a nice life in Cancun. I rent a room with a nice family in the downtown area, I’m engaged to be married in July to a great local guy named Jorge, I live with my french poodle, Suki, and I have a great job at a large travel agency.

The nickname “Gringation” comes from a great friend, schoolmate, and housemate named Jorge (who I call by his last name, Zamora, so as not to confuse him with my fiancé). It began as just “Gringa”, a Mexican slang term for a white person, usually from the US or Canada. Since Cancunenses love to add “-ation” onto certain English words as weird, Spanglish wordplay (Ex:  writation, sleepation, etc), over the years my new nickname evolved into “Gringation”.

Here, I have about 10 nicknames. In the US, I have no nicknames.

This blog is about my day to day life, my cultural struggles in Cancun, and the oh-so-complicated arrangements for my upcoming wedding.


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