And here I am again . . . wasting far too much time on the internet. But, if you're reading this, you are also probably wasting far too much time on the internet. So at least we're in good company.
For well over a year now, since I formed my pathological facebook addiction, I've asked myself what facebook (among other internet toys) is doing to the way we communicate. I think it's wonderful to be reconnected with real friends I would have otherwise never heard from again. I also think it's pretty entertaining to be connected with people I went to high school with--many of whom I know better now, thanks to facebook, than I ever did when we were forced to interact daily over the course of 10 years' worth of formal education. Now, thanks for groups and discussion boards, I'm finding that some of my most meaningful conversations take place with people that I've never actually met. (Keep in mind, I do spend the lion's share of my day alone with a pre-verbal little girl. It's great, but meaningful conversations do not abound.)
Then, to cement my internet addiction, I began a blog. I wanted to use it as a kind of letter to friends and family to let them know what was going on in our lives and my impressions of Mexico (as most people I know will never get the chance to visit me here). Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night, thinking, "Ooo--I'll have to blog about THAT!" My apologies if you've read my poem about chilaquiles.
Then, I stumbled upon blogs from other gringas living in Mexico. Oh, dear heavens--my universe expanded exponentially. My husband will soon be sending me to Internet Anonymous. (Keeping this in mind, I do try to limit my internet hours to the time when Clara is napping or those nights when Mario decides to go to bed at 9:30. I am determined that I will NOT be one of those people who list facebook as a reason why their marriage failed.)
But really, how would I be getting along if I didn't have this monster in my living room? It makes me think of my professor, who moved to Mexico in the 1950s, when even long-distance phone calls were an inconceivable luxury. How on earth did she do it? I'm so grateful that I can keep connected to my family and friends, but if I were connected a little bit less to the US, would I be better connected in my neighborhood here?
That's a question that really doesn't have an answer, as I'm not giving up the internet any time soon. [My mother just heaved a sigh of relief.]
Furthermore, two of the few friends I have in this town are thanks to my amazing stalking abilities--blog-stalking and facebook profiling. (Yes, I'm shameless.) Without this wonderful tool, I'd be stuck thinking that I was the only gringa that had tried living in Mexico and navigating its frustrating waters. Now I know, that's so not the case.
So, to all my new blogger buddies--thanks. I love hearing your stories and just knowing that you're out there. To Sheila and Missy--thanks for not being weirded out by me. I am that much saner by having real friends I can see in person.
To all those family and friends in the US--I miss you! But I'm so grateful that we're not complete strangers for those first few awkward days I come back to visit.
Que viva el internet!