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Juan Jimenez

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What do you expect when you travel to another country?

If you are in a foreign country, what do you expect, what do you want to see, what would you like to learn and take away from that place?

Topics: traveling
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    Jul 27 2012: Hello Juan,
    When I travel, I have no expectations. My intent was always to learn about the culture, and connect with people. I am open to learning whatever there is to learn. I often carried tennis balls in my backpack, and when entering a little village, there were almost always curious children to greet us. I would toss a ball to one of the children, and before we knew it, there was a ball game going on. More children would come and sometimes parents would join in. I always left the ball with the first child who started playing, and they were often very surprised that I would give them such a huge (for them) gift. In some western cultures, some folks are not aware of how much we have, and how little some other people in our world have.

    I remember one time in So. America in a little mountain village, after a ball game, I gave the ball to the first little boy who started playing. He was surprised...he thought about it for a minute...then ran off smiling.....and gave it to a little boy on the sidelines who had no legs. We had included this little fellow in our game to the degree that he could participate. Still touches my heart:>)

    One time, while visiting my friend in Ajijic (near Lake Chapala) we took a day trip to Guadalajara, and planned to see the cultural show in the big theater there. While waiting in the square outside, some children were playing ball, and the ball happened to come my way. I tossed it back...they tossed it back to me....we started laughing, and suddenly, I was part of the ball game. I love children, and it gives me pleasure to connect in this way.

    I learn a little bit of the language (please, thank you, hello, goodbye....basics), often dress similar to the people in that culture. While in Egype, for example, I sometimes wore a head covering for practical reasons....it kept the sand and sun out of the face while riding camels in the desert! Simply doing that seemed to connect me very quickly with local women along the way.
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      Jul 28 2012: Colleen, its nice to see you in a conversation again, thank you for sharing such a heart warming stories, it is particularly refreshing to read a story from your hometown. It will be nice to see someone following the ball game in a random country in the near future. Regards.

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