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Saturday, January 21, 2012

Confianza

I now know how difficult it is living in another country. Every time I saw exchange students at the university back home, I would want to talk to them and ask them if they'd like me to show them around. I don't blame them at all for sticking to one another. It's definitely stressful being in a new country- especially if you don't completely know the language.

Today, I went into the store and spent about 20 minutes starring at the shampoo section in the store because I was translating, deciding which brand was best, which shampoo was best, converting prices with the exchange rate,and comparing prices with the exchange rate all at the same time. Even just buying shampoo in another country is overwhelming.

If there are things you don't pick up on because of the language, people can easily take advantage of the situation. In the U.S. and Nicaragua, and probably every country, prices are generally different for foreigners, especially in the cities. I never was one to live in the city, and living in Managua has been a crazy experience so far.

For me, the biggest worry about being here is worrying about people charging me more money for everything I do just because I look a certain way or don't know the language perfectly. It's something constantly in the back of my mind. When I see a price displayed somewhere, that's when I'm able to relax a little.

Another thing I have to worry about is being out after dark in Managua. If I am I just have to be with a friend and take a taxi to wherever I'm going. It's a city. Like all large cities, it can be very dangerous at night.

These are my worries about being here now. I know they will be eased once I get more comfortable here. I've gotten so much great advice from so many wonderful people here like the family I live with and professors at the university. After time, everything I've learned about Managua will make it easy to live here in a culture very different from my comfort zone in the U.S.

2 comments:

  1. It seems pretty common to charge tourists extra. When we were in Florence our guide told us to always ask how much anything cost and that the response to whatever price was given was always 'Do you think I'm crazy'. Maybe it would work in Nicaragua too.

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    1. Thanks! Good tip. I will definitely try this. :)

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