A “Brake” for Thanksgiving, and the moments to recapture for a reason…

It’s almost unbelievable to take in, Thanksgiving Break 2014, here…now…after waiting for what seemed liked forever about September of 2014 – and here we are, moments that are slowly seeping in but will take days to really react to.

Looking back I see the future posts that have been postpone and put on hold with the advent of keeping up with so many essentials of the last few weeks, yet the topics of reflecting on Debate 101, a documentary film experience NOT to be forgotten, films that have truly been worth the visit, adding also the mix of amazing new breakthroughs of our Repentino. staff these past few weeks, and adding an amazing, amazing end to a week that involved a freshman advocacy class that took no prisoners and worked like MAD successfully through many amazing hoops, as well as the current state of Mexico amid cries for change, it has been one heck of a last few months.

I have always been the type of person to put 110% of everything I have and spread it around to everyone I come into contact with once I walk across that front gate of my school. This means students/faculty/colleagues/ etc. around me get everything I have to give, and when I walk through that door of my home, I am spent, literally, SPENT, not much left until I can crawl myself into bed and recharge for a few hours.  Yet, I’d have it no other way in seeing the amazing strides that result from being able to motivate, push, encourage, and be behind some of the greatest stockholders of the future I have ever seen.

We come to the final week before Thanksgiving “Brake” and I realize, there are two types of categories of individuals when it comes to holidays.  Those that plan out the exotic, feel the need, urge, and freedom to break away and experience the far away and totally different ( I do get this from time to time as well!)   The second category are usually the people that just, well don’t.  This is the funny thing, I have always considered, and will continue to do so, myself to be a total adventurer, ready for the next road tip, excursion, adventure.   I live for the plans on the run, last minute decisions, and see what happens as a result.  Yet, of the first four years, even with some traveling here and there, I have realized this – I have no urge at all to leave during breaks and I realize this for two main reasons – I LOVE when the city empties out of everyone and it almost feels like a release valve has been turned to allow me to dig into the amazing quietness and peacefulness the city has to offer without worrying about anything and anyone to interrupt even newer experiences.  Second, I realize I have needed these four years to take in so many exciting things about the city, I never have had the urge to leave Mexico City, ever – and even when I did, I found myself wanting to go back to simply revel in the amazing feeling I experience in my neighborhood and weekend markets.  This tells me what an invigorating, inspiring, and renewing place I live in, and I actually have taken pride in not wanting to visit any to-die for locations outside of the city due to the fact that, every aspect of this city excites me constantly without having to travel far away to feel that way.  I feel way more than a little privileged to be able to feel this way about my surroundings, which is part of the love affair I have with Mexico City.  It’s funny, when you actually stop sometimes on the street corner coming or going, right in the middle of everyone ; take in the people around you, honestly, I feel like I might be in New York, on the corner of Chicago, etc and that I am not actually in one of the largest cities into world, you simply do not realize it.  Look at a map and you stand back saying, “Whoa, this is where I am?”  I like that.

I see my years 5 and beyond being filled up with the very recommendations and locations people found themselves in during these past 4 years of breaks, holidays, etc and I do look forward to that.  Yet, I realize how amazing of a city I live in, where public expressions, the ability to witness protests full of compassion, and experiencing what it is like when many of the individuals you see from day to day leave and something is left behind that calls out, “The best is coming this break!”  Don’t get me wrong, I am going to be super excited when I continue to visit locations that I have heard and seen visit 2-3 times already when I haven’t yet, but I feel at least for me, these very excursions will be even more meaningful as I have been lucky enough to meet, experience, and write about some amazing, AMAZING individuals right here in my own neighborhood and within reach city.  I know for every person a break, puente, holiday, etc means something different, and I so so look forward to visiting home in the states when a longer break affords maximum visits.  I just find myself repelled with not being able to ask in the quietness, the calmness, the “getting back to basics” feeling that a break remaining in the D.F of Mexico affords and not taking that in on breaks; for me, this is a healing process to be able to build up my storehouses of energy to be able to again return to some amazing students when I return from break so we can push each other forward.

I regret my time in Delaware that was not on aspects I could have appreciated the amazing resources around me, (Mexico has taught me that being able to do so here) and I realize this each time I go back to visit, I feel like a tourist all over again remembering how incredibly hard I worked, so much so that I missed some incredible areas, establishments, and events that many take for granted because they are around it all the time.  I had found myself working around the clock and missed out on much of that.  However, Mexico City has taught me just the opposite, how to breathe in deeply the moments, the evening winds, the locations that are easy to walk by quickly and knowing when to slowly take them in.  In doing so I find every break allows ,e an opportunity to see the city in a totally different way, and this is exciting.

I know many feel alone, lonely, or as if they are missing out on something by not leaving on every break they can.  If you take careful observation, you will realize that Mexico City  has this magnetic pull if you tune into it, and when the holidays and breaks occur, you realize so much more about yourself, your home city, and the people within these areas when you stay close and have the freedom to let yourself discover – a morning run or walk, a late night up with the windows open and the smells of a BBQ grill drift in, the sound of saxophone music in the morning, and the early morning sun that hits you as you slowly wake up on your terms with no rushing involved; yes, Mexico City embraces you as much as you allow yourself to embrace the city – and after that – you find nothing more is needed outside of Mexico City, which is certainly different than anything I have ever experienced.

Debate 101 – the next post- refers to October 31st and the amazing world of student debate, a world that took me in and I never even realized what was happening before I walked away amazed at the experience I was lucky enough to be involved in.  After that, you will see a series of posts this week that will also show you what I am truly thankful for, and all those that helped bring those realizations to light.  It is an amazing meaningful life when you reflect on how many amazing individuals help make it that way, and all the more reason to celebrate these during Thanksgiving Break.  I look forward to sharing these with you 🙂

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About Harry Brake

Employee of ASF in Mexico City, Librarian, Media crazy! :)
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