Hey guys, it’s Holly, and in today’s video I’m going to tell you a little story about how I was welcomed into “tercero de prepa,” which is basically senior year of high school. This all happened in Orizaba, Veracruz and if you want to hear about all my crazy life ramblings and wanderings, you can check out, uh, the video that I’m gonna link right here, but basically I had just moved from, Oaxaca and I moved to Orizaba, which is about six hours away. And I had lived in Orizaba in seventh grade, so I hadn’t been back for quite a few years and basically, everything was new to me again. So, this is just a fun story about how school in Mexico can be very different from school in the U.S. So, my best friend Lis was living with us And I remember looking for a few days for the school that we were going to be enrolled in. I’m not quite sure what the criteria were. It may have been a factor that all of the walls of this school were painted a very bright, purple, lilac color. Honestly, it probably was a factor. Anyway, this school was half university, half high school. And Lis and I had to separate into different classrooms because in Mexico, or at least at this school, you have to start choosing your specialty when you’re a senior in high school. So, I went ahead and chose physics and math. And in this classroom there were about 40 males and maybe eight to ten females. It was definitely not a balanced ratio, so anyway, “punto y aparte” (let’s change the subject) as we say in Spanish. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw a friendly face. My friend, Karla, from five years before. I had met her at the previous school I had gone to in this city. And it was really, really nice to have somebody to chat with and mingle with and feel normal with. I don’t know about you but I’m very Hmm, how can I say this introverted? I know that I seem very bubbly and loud, which I really, really am. But I never assumed that people want to talk to me. So, I kind of just sit around and wait for other people to approach me. I’m a little bit shy, believe it or not. So, having Karla there was nice and One day it couldn’t have been more than two weeks into the school year She came up to me at lunchtime, and she said, ‘Hey, see those guys out there?’ And I looked through the windows into the hallway and there was a group of about eight or nine guys standing around in a circle. She said, ‘They want you to go and ask the tall guy how his grandpa dances.’ And I was like, ‘What?’ She’s like, ‘Yeah. They want you to go ask him how his grandpa dances.’ I’m like, ‘I don’t understand. Is this like a thing…?’ and she’s like, ‘I-I don’t know they just told me to ask you’ and I’m like ‘Okay.’ And Normal Holly would have just said, ‘You know what? No. Why would I do that? ‘Why would I step out of my comfort zone and walk up to a bunch of people I don’t know and ask a question that doesn’t even make sense.’ I honestly didn’t want to, but I was also in a phase in my life where I was like: Holly, get over yourself. Take risks. Step outside your box. Step outside your boundaries. Take charge of your life and do fun things! And for some reason, this fit in that category in my head. So, I was like, you know what? I’m going to do it! If it scares you, maybe you should do it… or maybe not. Anyway, so I gathered up my strength and courage and walked outside And they’re all just like chatting and laughing, and I’m like, Oh my gosh. Why am I doing this? Uhhh. So, I walk over to this guy, his name is Jose, very casually, and I’m like trying to pretend like this was my idea to ask this question. And I’m like, ‘Hey, so uh, I’m really curious wow does your grandpa dance?’ and all of the laughing and the chatter stops. They all turn around to look at me and they start, ‘Oh man ooh. What- what is she even– ah?’ And Jose looks me in the eye, and I swear it looked like he was about to tear up and he goes, ‘My grandpa’s in a wheelchair.’ This other guy, Rafa puts his arm around him and is like, ‘Man, that was messed up.’ And they walk away toward the men’s bathroom, but I’m like, ‘Wait. I’m not a bad person! I don’t ev– ah– ek ek.’ Processing a million thoughts in that moment. I’m like, wait who’s idea was this?
Who’s trying to make me look bad? Who’s trying to make fun of this guy?’ Maybe they bully him every day with this with every newcomer. What the heck is going on?! I felt so awful. I have no rapport established with these people I’m like eeehhhhh How can I tell you that I’m not a terrible person? And I started to tear up, and I’m like, okay. I do not want to deal with any of this. And I just started running for the hills. In this case, the hills is the gymnasium. I ran all the way down the hall kept running, kept running. I could hear random people yelling in the background and I’m like, I do not even care. Turn left. Go to the gymnasium. Start booking it up the bleachers. Boom. Boom. Boom Boom. Boom. Boom. Boom. Boom. And at this point, I’m crying. I’m just like I feel so terrible that I just made this guy feel bad and it sounds like this is something that they do to him often like what in the world? What kind of people do this? Who am I being perceived as right now? He thinks I’m part of this. When I get to the top step, I’m just sitting there by myself crying trying to process. Some of the guys are not far behind me and they reach me and I’m just like, ‘I don’t even want to talk to you. Go away. Leave me alone,’ and one of the guys says ‘Holly, it’s not true.’ And I’m like, ‘What do you mean?’ And they’re like, ‘It’s not true.’ And I’m like, ‘What-what? Who’s idea was–? Why did I–?’ And they’re like, ‘Jose’s grandpa is not in a wheelchair. He’s perfectly fine.’ And I’m like ‘I don’t believe you! I-I said, ‘I won’t believe it until he comes up here and tells me himself.’ They brought in Jose, and he was laughing. And he was like, ‘I’m sorry. I did– we just had to do this to you. It’s not true.’ And I’m like, ‘Wow! I was feeling awful. I was like– What kind of person does he think I am? Like, what kind of people bully a guy like this? I mean who’d– what kind of question is that? Who does that?’ And everyone was laughing and honestly, it jump-started our friendship because
we got past that whole awkward ‘acquaintances asking about the weather’ kind of phase. And we jumped right in. And they said, ‘You know what, we like to do this to people to find out what kind of people they are and you passed our test. You’ve got a good heart.’ And I’m like, ‘You had to see me cry to find out that I have a good heart?’ And they’re like, ‘Yeah.’ But honestly these guys became really, really good friends of mine and it’s a really weird way to get to know someone, but at the same time, I felt like it was kind of cool. You know? They were in some way showing that they were interested in getting to know me and cared about me. Again, something I never experienced when I was the new kid in the U.S. So, yeah. I feel like that really says a lot about the warmth and genuineness of the kids in Mexico that went to school with me. And I think you can sort of generalize and say that people are just warm in Mexico, and interested and curious. Much like I said in my other video about growing up between Mexico and the U.S. Anyway, I thought this is a really fun anecdote, and I have many, many more to share with you guys. But I thought I’d just keep it short this time if you’re interested in seeing any photos from that time, or maybe our little notebook where we would write crazy things back and forth to each other, I would be glad to share that with you guys, so let me know in the comments. As for this video, I think we’re gonna cut it off here. Thank you guys so much for joining me. I will talk to you soon. Bye! And I was like, ‘Uh, hey so, I’m really curious. I just I can’t… contain my curiosity.’ Go all the way up. Go all the way up. Up the– up the– ¡Hola amiguitos! Yo soy– oh! English!