Oh my goodness, ONE MONTH! 31 days til Luis and I leave on this crazy adventure! I didn't think it was ever going to feel real! Well, it got more real after we FINALLY bought our tickets. First little word of advice for other travelers, purchase your tickets at least 5 months in advance. The tickets are so cheap! Unfortunately my husband kept on pushing back the date to buy the tickets. He had very valid reasons but still, our tickets were not as cheap as they should have been. But I digress (returning to previous excitement)....
....I can't believe how close it is! I feel like I should start packing or throwing away perishable food or something. After the doctors visits, shots, buying the tickets, planning logistics, and such, we are kind of at a stand still. Well, maybe some A-type personalities would already be packing but I'm not A-type personality, or B, or C... I'm more like Z-type personality. I'm still wearing some of the clothes I want to take to Guatemala, plus in our tiny apartment we don't really have places to put the luggage. Speaking of luggage, Luis and I are trying to each take ONE suitcase (count it, ONE) and one empty bag for souvenirs. Traveling light, as hard as it may be, will probably be the smartest idea we'll have. Less baggage to carry around and less baggage to loose.. Less is more right?
Any-who... where was I? Oh right, feeling like there isn't much to do right now in terms of getting ready for our trip. One thing I've been doing religiously though is reading our Frommer's Guide to Chile. Second word of advice? If you are going ANYWHERE out of country get the Frommer's Guide! It is the easiest to read and funny. It's literally like a bunch of your friends opinions rolled into one fantastic guide book. There's this one part where they talk about a hotel that is really great but the owner is extremely grumpy but to not let that stop you from going there; and there's this other part that talks about staying away from a certain club because "gringos are not welcome"! There's tons of stuff like that in the book, it makes you realize that the people writing it have actually been there. Also, they do have important stuff like tips on hotels, restaurants, outdoor activities, clubs, phone numbers, when to go to the previously mentioned places, how to get there, and maps galore.
One thing that we should have been doing and haven't is improving my Spanish. It is sorely lacking and we haven't tried very much to make it better! I do understand quite a bit but can't really speak it. When Luis and I first got married his parents always spoke in English whenever I was around. They raised Luis speaking Spanish in the home so I was very grateful when they spoke English because I knew they were trying to include me in the conversation. However, when we first talked about this trip with Luis's parents they told me that they would no longer speak to me in English, only Spanish! But as much as they tried to only do Spanish they usually caved in and spoke English when talking to me. Although, they would talk to Luis in Spanish while I was still in the room so I have still heard more Spanish than normal!
On a side note, one of the things that I love about the Spanish language is that there are three different ways to say love. When we say love, I can love my guitar and love my husband. The only thing that separates the meaning is my tone of voice and the moment it's in. In spanish, I would say "Me encanta la guitara!" But if I'm talking to Luis I wouldn't use the verb encantar, I would use either "Te quiero Luis" or "Te Amo Luis". For those of you who know nothing about Spanish except the Taco Bell commercial "Yo quiero Taco Bell", then yes, it does mean to want something. So let me explain... When you use "Te quiero" to a person it does not mean 'want', it means love. If you use 'yo quiero' and you're talking about food or an object it will always mean want. Some people say that 'te quiero' is most often used between family members and sometimes budding relationships. Those same people say 'Te Amo' is most often used between a husband and wife and longer relationships. Personally though, I love hearing Luis tell me "Te quiero mucho"! I don't just feel loved, I feel wanted :)... I love that the spanish language has the distinction between loving something and loving someone. It seems much more special when someone says those words to you.
I hope you other travelers are either going to an English speaking country, or know the language, or just worked harder than I did. If you don't know the language then at least have someone with you that does! I have a feeling that I'm going to be relying heavily on Luis. I'm so used to being independent and figuring things out on my own, even after we got married! So amidst the language learning, money translating, and food trying, we'll be growing immensely in our relationship as well!
I feel like my thoughts are very scattered today, hope you guys could follow along :)
Still can't believe we head out in a month!