Things That Matter

These Two Women Shared Their Stories About Traveling And Falling In Love Abroad

Booking a flight to another country and immersing yourself in the local culture can give you some serious ???? eyes. New sights, new sounds, perhaps even new phrases or a new language can all heighten the senses and stir up the heart strings. From a coming-of-age story of love and self acceptance, to realizing that sometimes falling in love abroad is dreamier than moving together abroad, these two women share stories of falling in love in Latin America and with Latinos traveling abroad.

A family friend sparks an incredible romance that helped her move on to her next chapter.

Eleven years ago I was 21 years old and slowly approaching what I have jokingly referred to as my “quarter life crisis”. Since I had not attended college, I found myself dissatisfied with my fallen-into career. I also had now outgrown my only relationship, which stemmed from high school. Feeling lost, I was anxiously trying to find my way. It was during a family trip to Mexico upon arrival at a party, that I saw my father’s closest friend, Jorge and his son Eduardo. It had been years since I last saw them. When I was younger I enjoyed visiting Mexico and spending time with Eduardo’s family. Admittedly, I had a small crush. However since he was 5 years older, that’s all it was. He was very attractive and athletic, having excelled competitively in the tennis community. Although we were now both in our 20s, as we talked and caught up I realized that some things really hadn’t changed. Eduardo always reminded me of a young Enrique Iglesias, whose mocha colored skin and bright smile presented a stunning contrast. This combo somehow still made me blush. We exchanged information, and maintained contact once I returned home. Eventually a romance ensued, but more importantly a friendship. We were both excited when he received a job offer in Tijuana, as that meant a two-hour drive versus a two-hour flight. This gave me the opportunity to show him around my hometown of Los Angeles, where we created some great memories. Eventually the romance slowly fizzled down mainly due to our different paths. However, we remain close friends. I hadn’t realized how much my self-esteem was being impacted by my circumstances. In a time where I was beginning to experience self-doubt in my abilities, he provided me with excitement and confidence that sparked the fuse which propelled me into my next chapter.”

—Submitted by *Alexzia

A college fling in Cuba fizzled out while moving to Spain.

Doesn’t everybody?  ???? Fell in love with a Cuban during graduate studies in anthropology in Havana. He had a job offer in Spain. I figured I’d finish my thesis and go teach English in Argentina. His sister suggested I do that in Spain instead, seeing how when you date a Cuban, you kinda date the whole family and they were all headed to Spain eventually. The breakup started right after he got to Madrid, but by then I was getting little job leads and a chance to study journalism there – in Spanish. I went anyway. We ended before my arrival, tried to muster a friendship but it was weird – and also hard, both of us rather alone as immigrants in a foreign country. I would learn through other Cuban connections that lots and lots of relationships don’t survive such migrations, even Cubans with Cubans because the change is so radical. I graduated from El País School of Journalism about a year and a half later. He married and had a baby almost immediately. —Submitted by Julienne


READ: J.Lo And A.Rod *Fall In Love* While PR and DR Brawl On Twitter

Have you ever fallen in love while traveling in Latin America? Share your stories with us!

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In Cuba, Where Food Is Unreliable, Savvy Cooks Have Turned to Facebook to Share Recipes

Culture

In Cuba, Where Food Is Unreliable, Savvy Cooks Have Turned to Facebook to Share Recipes

Photo via Getty Images

COVID-19 hasn’t been easy for Cubans. Not only have Cubans been physically affected by the virus like the rest of the world, but the drop in the island’s gross domestic product has stymied local economic productivity. The island can no longer look to tourism to add to their GDP.

Because of this drop in GDP, food shortages on the island have become more severe than in recent memory. And Cuban cooks are feeling the effects.

Cubans must stand in line for hours at markets with no guarantees that the ingredients that they want will be available.

This way of living is especially hard for Cuban cooks, like 39-year-old Yuliet Colón. For Colón, cooking is both a creative expression and a stress reliever. “The kitchen is my happy place, where I am calmer and I feel better,” she recently revealed to the Associated Press.

Yuliet Colón is one of the creators of a Facebook page called Recetas del Corazón that has changed the cooking game for thousands of Cubans.

Now, thanks to Colón and other curious and generous Cuban cooks like her, Recipes from the Heart is now 12,000 members strong.

The goal of the page is to help struggling Cuban cooks cope with food shortages. Members of the page share creative recipes, tips, and food substitutions. Launched in June of 2020, the page was an instant success. Its success proves that Cubans have been desperate to find ways to adapt their cooking to the post-COVID-era.

To AP News, Yuliet Colón laments about the lack of rice, beans, cheese, fruit, and, most of all, eggs. “What I like the most is making desserts, but now it’s hard to get eggs, milk or flour,” she revealed.

The brightside is, however, that Cuban cooks are finally able to share food-related tips and tricks with each other on a much larger scale than they were before the internet became more widespread in the country.

Now that many Cubans have access to communication apps like Facebook and WhatsApp, they can now connect with one another and make the most of what they have–however little that may be.

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Mexico Is Owning The Instagram-Worthy World Of Glamping With These Bubble Hotels

Culture

Mexico Is Owning The Instagram-Worthy World Of Glamping With These Bubble Hotels

Right now just about everyone is itching to go on vacation. But considering that we’re still mid-pandemic and the call remains to socially distance, what can one do?

Sure, glamping is nothing new – it’s filled our Instagram feeds for years and was around long before that – but it may just provide travelers with that socially-distanced staycation that so many of us need right about now. Or, better yet, wait a little while longer and get yourself to Mexico where several new glamping bubble hotels are popping up.

Mexico will soon have three “bubble hotel” options for tourists looking for the next level of “glamping.”

When you think of camping, many of us think of bugs, not showering, and doing our private business behind a bush somewhere. While that’s still definitely an option for those of us that are into it, glamping has been a trend towards making the camping experience a more comfortable one.

Glamping has been gaining popularity among nature lovers, who also want to enjoy those everyday creature comforts, but in the midst of beautiful landscapes. That’s why bubble hotels have been popping up across Mexico, to offer clients a unique stay, close to nature they’re the perfect ‘getaway’ to get out of your daily routine.

From the bosque outside Mexico City to the deserts of Baja, Mexico is a glamping paradise. 

These bubble hotels have rooms described by travel guidebook publisher Lonely Planet as essentially inflatable, transparent domes designed to allow guests to cocoon themselves in nature without quite leaving their material comforts behind. 

There are already two such properties across Mexico with a third which will begin welcoming guests sometime toward the end of this year.

One of those that is already operational is Alpino Bubble Glamping in Mexico City while the other is the Campera Bubble Hotel in the Valle de Guadalupe wine region of Baja California.

Located in the Cumbres de Ajusco National Park in the south of the capital, the former has just two “bubbles,” a 40-square-meter deluxe one that goes for 4,500 pesos (about US $220) a night and a 25-square-meter standard where a stay costs a slightly more affordable 4,000 pesos.

Both have views of the Pico del Águila, the highest point of the Ajusco, or Xitle, volcano, and come equipped with telescopes that guests can use to get a better view of the surrounding scenery and night sky.

Bubble glamping isn’t the camping our parents dragged us out to do in the woods as kids.

Credit: Alpino Bubble Hotel

Sure you may be connecting with nature and enjoying awesome activities like horseback riding, stargazing, hiking or rafting, but these properties come with all the creature comforts we’re used to. 

Move nights, wifi, breakfast in bed, warm showers, luxurious bedding, and even a full bar are all standard amenities at many of these properties.

What do you think? Would you be up to stay the night at one of these bubble hotels?

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