I have apparently been in Mexico for 12 days. This is somewhat of a surprising fact to me, looking down at the date on my computer. When I had been in Guadalajara for 24 hours, it felt like a week, my brain on overload from all the experiences I had had. By my fourth full day in Guadalajara, I felt myself enough of an old hand that I walked to the Arcas de Minerva, a few miles away, and then back to my AirBnB, getting only slightly lost in my own neighborhood on my return. Across those first few days, from Saturday night of the 30th of November, when I got into the airport after a 24 hour bus and airplane journey, until the 4th of December, the world around me resolved from a series of disconnected places to a place I could navigate by instinct. Mas o menos. Grocery stores made sense! I learned my street name! Then, for some reason, the past week whooshed by, even though I was still doing new and different things: walking along the light rail line, going to the famous Jalisco Bookfair, and generally expanding my familiarity with my surroundings. And of course, going to class. But after that first three days of mentally restructuring, time moved into a different pattern.
Oh, and rather than my always vague reports on the subjective flow of time, what about Guadalajara, and Mexico? Well, my first summation is going to be, of course, Don't Believe The Hype. People in the United States tend to paint Mexico, and Latin America, as either romantic or mystical cultures of beauty and vibrancy, or else (or sometimes also) as violent, corrupt and impoverished. Well, Guadalajara is a big city, and I have seen some of both, but in my time so far, I have been...eating croissants and vegetarian hamburgers, and going to class. My life here has been pretty normal, in many respects, and so I will refrain from giving a summary of an entire county after spending 12 days in one city.