Adventure Stories Feature

Fleeing America: The Grass is Greener

Written by Elyse Robinson

Blessed to have spent the last few months with my mother who was in and out of the hospital receiving blood transfusions, I realized nothing in life is promised. As I helped bathe my mother in the hospital shower, I could almost see every bone in her body. I knew then I could not continue to live the life I lived. I needed and wanted to explore the world or else I would end up like my parents never leaving the United States. There are so many amazing things in this world to see and that became my life’s goal.

Before I headed to Mexico, my first passport stamp was from China. I ended up finding a position as a Business Instructor at a university in China. It was fun while it lasted. I experienced a new culture, language, and a new way of living. I had to come back because I couldn’t focus on my new life while my mother was sick. I should have never left in the first place, but I wouldn’t change a thing. I would definitely go back to China to live with no hesitation. The ability to save most of your salary was out of this world.

Fast forward to the future and I’m back in the states helping my mother and father. My mother passes away and I realize that I only know one language…English. I needed to know another language to be competitive in this world. I settled on learning Spanish and chose to learn it in Mexico City, Mexico. I had never been to Mexico City let alone Mexico even after living on the border twice in San Diego and Tucson, Arizona.

Born and raised in sunny Sacramento, California. I lived there until I was 22 years old and moved to Boston for my first federal job. Throughout my years as a federal employee, I have lived in San Diego, Los Angeles, and Tucson, Arizona. I have a degree in accounting and worked as an Auditor for a few years prior to my move overseas. I can say my life was not bad as I lived a good life without too much struggle, but after my mother passed I wanted more. I was also starting to become disenfranchised with the United States due to killing after killing of my own people for no reason other than their skin color. It came to the point where I was scared to leave my house.

A few days after the funeral I flew into Mexico City…one of the largest cities in the world. I found a furnished apartment on AirBnb, a school to learn the language, and had a few thousand dollars to my name. Mexico is so cheap you can live on less than $500 per month in most areas. I chose Mexico City due to it being a direct flight from Houston and the flights being less than $200 round trip any time of the year. I actually took a leap of faith and knew nothing about Mexico City. All I knew is I wanted to learn Spanish. I ended up loving everything about Mexico City.

What can I say about Mexico City? I LOVE IT! It is like New York City on steriods but in a good way. I do not want for anything. The same amenities, stores, things I love to do I can find here. I am treated with respect and courtesy here and my skin color is not a barrier to anything that I do. I barely know Spanish but I’m getting better everyday with classes. As for work, I knew as soon as I got there I would have to change my thinking and become an entrepreneur in order to make it. I am self-employed and do a wide range of things to make ends meet here. From selling things online to currency trading to writing I get my hustle on. But I don’t have to work as hard as I did back in the states as it’s so cheap to live here. My life is fun and enjoyable now…something I’ve always dreamed of.

I wake up every morning to fresh squeezed juice…papaya, orange, strawberry, kiwi, pineapple, to name a few. Everything I eat is freshly cooked and made to order from soup to enchiladas to sopes. I can get my food delivered from most restaurants when I’m being lazy. When I have had my fill of Mexican food I hop right over to Red Lobster or Cheesecake Factory or PF Chang. I do not have to drive as I use Uber everywhere I go and pay between $1-$5. The people of Mexico are so patient with me since I don’t know much Spanish and are so accommodating. Besides good food I have a nice apartment with maid service that comes to clean my apartment and wash my clothes once per week. I am never bored as there is so much to do in Mexico City. From watching a real bull fight to swimming with dolphins at Six Flags to seeing pyramids…there’s so much to do!

When it comes to opportunities the sky is the limit. Everywhere you look someone has a small business selling everything you can imagine. My first time on the bus and train a man was selling pens and headphones and found a willing customer. I truly believe I could sell chitterlings and make a killing out here. There are millions of people that are willing to pay for english lessons. I’ve even gotten offers to dog sit while people are out of town. The sky is the limit on working for yourself and starting a business.

I now have a course, book, and web site dedicated to my travels and how to live in another country. I am here to say if life is not working for you, get out and explore somewhere else. Other countries around the world will open their arms to you and embrace you. There are 193 countries on this earth and one can be for you. I believe I have found my long term home in Mexico. For more information on moving to Mexico and living a fuller life abroad check out my web site at http://www.keenready.com.

Elyse Robinson

Elyse Robinson

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About the author

Elyse Robinson

I started this blog to encourage my Black brothers and sisters to go out and explore the world. Break the stereotype of “Black folks don’t do this or that”…

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