Abandon Your New Year’s Resolutions

By Miriam Cabrera

In comparison to others, we travelers have an entirely un-lofty set of New Years Resolutions. I mean, have you spoken to your friends and family back home about their New Years Resolutions? 

Like Cousin David. While he is resolving to allot an additional tenth of his salary to little Johnny’s college fund, we are hoping to find new techniques to evade getting robbed the last of our travel fund. 

While sorority sister Sarah hopes to get a promotion at work this year, we have resolved not to get kicked out of Guatemala for strange Visa debacles. 

And mom, well she will lose those last stubborn 5. In stark contrast, we have resolved to not lose 5 additional pounds due to another bout of amoebas in 2009. 

Yes, we may be shooting a bit low on the New Year’s resolution totem pole. But my advice is this: shoot even lower. Let’s do ourselves a favor and scratch the unachievable resolutions this year. We may be super achievers in the sense that we are tackling some serious travel-related challenges; but we are mere travelers after all. Let’s aim low: 

To begin with, who’s resolved to be a travel writer this year? Well stop that nonsense. The combination of these words, travel + writer equals pressure that we should be having and writing about some grandiose experiences. To avoid this unnecessary strain, let’s just travel. And write. Perhaps someday ‘travel’ will naturally merge with ‘writer’. Like when we have reliable internet access. 

Next, I hate to say it but come 2010, we still won’t be fluent in Spanish. Period. All those hours in cafes with our dictionaries, all the drudging through grammar lessons and awkwardness resulting from host family efforts will never add up to fluency. Not in 2009 anyway. So relax. Let’s get out of those cafes and into juicier places. Like Tuesday night hula hoop class. Or some rad indigenous village, picking coffee beans. 
Finally, why must we continue torturing ourselves with the hope to learn guitar? After the sixth consecutive year of failing to live our rock star dream, together, I believe it’s time to let this go. Instead, let’s pursue those hot guitarists who are playing in vivo all over Xela. And live vicariously through them. 

In short, this year let’s not fret so much about achieving this and that. Instead, let’s resolve a bit less and live a bit more 2009!

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