Kung Fu and Dirt

Work is starting to die down as the corporate split becomes a reality. Most of my students are moving to one of the other sites in Guadalajara and their replacements won’t start classes until August. I’m planned for the lack of work, so I won’t have any issues, but it also means that when I go on vacation I won’t have to worry as much about finding a replacement teacher. I’ll be down to one or two classes at that point, and I should be able to make up the time.

Some things here are starting to get on my nerves. I’m tired of everything being dirty all the time. It’s hard to be comfortable touching anything here. I leaned against a wall today while waiting for my food and got black grease on the back of my shirt. Fun way to start off. I miss having the relative comfort of knowing that most things are clean. I don’t necessarily worry about how sanitary they are, I can always wash my hands before eating, but I’m tired of the random unknown substances that seem to cover so many surfaces. Like the potholes, it’s something I just don’t want to get used to.

The rainy season has started here. It rains almost every night, usually around seven. It’s never much rain, but in the mountains everything channels downhill turning the streets into rivers. One day the reservoir broke and flooded calle ocho de julio. The street was completely blocked to traffic, and it took me two and a half hours to get home. People here complain about the drainage, but if that happened in San Diego, it would still be flooded a week later.

I’m making a lot more friends here. There are always new people to meet, and I finally have a little time since finals are over. It’s nice to have some time off, but I have to start focusing on finding an internship. I hope to find something in Atlanta, Miami, or South Africa. Very different places, but there are so many places to see. After that I’m looking at Taiwan, Africa, or back to Mexico for a while.

I went out with the Musician and some others for a birthday party. It was a long night of drinking and dancing. I’m learning as best I can, but it’s more natural for me to fight than to dance. I’ve heard they’re similar, but I haven’t practiced dancing in a long time. It’s still good, if only to make friends with new people. There are a couple I might see to start trading English for Spanish lessons also. The more practice I can get, the better. I need to start working on my Chinese if I plan to move to Taiwan, though.

There is something odd about moving to a new country where you think you know how you should act. I practice Kung Fu, and I don’t want to embarrass my teachers when I go to a place that is such an important place for so many of them. On the other hand, I can only practice so much. Time is always against me, and I’m tired of being in the mountains and taking so long to heal after working out. I need to practice my forms, but when I have time, I don’t have the energy. That is always the trade-off. Sleep, work, Kung Fu, and school. When I have time, I try to have a life as well.

My training is going better, sometimes. It’s good that I can hit harder here, but I still have to be careful not to hurt people. I’ve started studying the arts I know, finding better ways to use what I know, to modify my tactics and make them work better. I never liked watching martial arts before now, but I’m finally at the place where I can start to understand and use what I am seeing in the videos. I have enough of a foundation that I can be something more. It always amazes me what a difference a slight change in motion, or a simple twist of an arm can do to change the structure of a defense or an attack. The tiniest detail that is overlooked makes a vast difference between success and failure.

I think that’s what I love about the arts themselves. The level of perfection required, how complex and simple it can be at the same time, the focus and the benefit of that focus. Every detail is amazing, and every mistake is a wonder. The best part is, there is always more to learn.

Above all else, I fucking hate the wifi in this country that allows me to watch Nexflix but can’t maintain a stable enough connection to upload five photos.

Ocho de julio.

Ocho de julio.

Some people tried to drive through, and failed.

Some people tried to drive through, and failed.

I think these cars were just parked before it started raining.

I think these cars were just parked before it started raining.

More street art. The view is bad, but it's hidden by trees at any other angle.

More street art. The view is bad, but it’s hidden by trees at any other angle.

One of the things I know I'll miss is the art gallery on Chapultepec on Sundays.

One of the things I know I’ll miss is the art gallery on Chapultepec on Sundays.

This entry was posted in 2015-06, Guadalajara and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Kung Fu and Dirt

  1. mom says:

    That is some phenomenal rain….and you’re right. Those streets would still be closed a week later here. I enjoyed the art on Chapultepec. It was interesting and usually beautiful. In the beginning you sounded angry? depressed? frustrated? You ok?


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