I have arrived safely in Querétaro! It was smooth traveling, but not without many classic “Rachel” thoughts rushing through my mind. Keep reading to get the play-by-play and watch the video to see the experience as I did.
June 17, 2016 Evening
T-shirt, jeans, shorts, skirts.
Shampoo, conditioner, hair brush, toothbrush.
Passport, tickets, wallet, water bottle.
Surely I am forgetting something, but for the life of me I cannot think of what it is. It would be impossible for me, of all people, to not forget anything when packing for five weeks in a foreign country. But, I have packed, unpacked, and repacked all of my luggage while announcing to Nhakira everything that passes through my hands while she skims through packing lists posted online to see if anything has slipped both of our minds.
I am with my family in a hotel in Portland now. It’s after 11pm and I really should be asleep since we have to get up by 3am. But how is one supposed to sleep the night before they fly out for a study abroad experience?! I still haven’t thought of what I forgot. So, since I can not stress about when I cannot remember that I forgot to pack, I better think of something else to stress about.
Pesos!! I really should have ordered pesos from the bank to have on hand prior to arriving in Mexico. What if my debit card doesn’t work? What if I need pesos to get pesos? Well, that isn’t logical, but it’s possible, right?? Probably not. I know that everyone said to wait and get them in Mexico, but from now on, whenever I travel internationally, I am going to order the foreign currency from the bank before departing.
Well, since its mid night and I have found something sufficient to stress about, I can try to go to sleep again.
June 18, 2016 4am
At the airport now. Adios padres! I checked in my luggage and made it all the way through security to my gate in half an hour. Three other girls also going to Querétaro are here, too. Now to wait until our 6am flight.
Our first flight was fast. We have a short layover in Salt Lake City, Utah. I have never been to Utah before, and I still haven’t. It doesn’t count unless you leave the airport. I’ll come back someday. The mountains that I can see through the windows look adventurous.
We have landed in Mexico City! We got pesos. The place we went to only accepted cash. Thankfully, I had $45 US. Hopefully that is enough pesos to last the day. That got me $774 pesos. The bus ticket cost $375 pesos. The ride to Querétaro ended up taking much longer than expected.
We have arrived in Querétaro! Jennifer, the program coordinator, met us here. We made it. All the way from Portland, Oregon, USA to Querétaro, Querétaro, Mexico. A quick $25 peso taxi ride later and we are at out hotel, the Blue Bicycle House. The night in the hostel cost $245 pesos. I had just enough left. Jennifer walked us around Querétaro for about an hour showing us here and there. The view is amazing. There is this incredible aqueduct, called Los Arcos, that was built in the 1700s to transport water from outside the city into Querétaro.
June 19, 2016 2am
Again, I should really be asleep. I am exhausted after such a long day of travel, but I just cannot fall asleep. My excitement to meet my host family later today is just too much.