I lost it…and missed it

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I lost my mind, I stopped feeling the rush and anxiety that makes me get on time every time we are traveling. The stress of missing a flight, a train, not getting to our destination or having a place booked to stay has been with me for years…not last weekend.

6:10pm flight from Mexico City to San Francisco, all packed after 30 days of working remotely and spending quality time with our loved ones. 3:15pm was the appointment time to head out to the airport, everybody ready and I wanted so badly my last horchata coffee from Cielito Querido Cafe. So, since we were on time let’s pick the coffee up on our way and home we go. 

4pm-ish we head out to the airport, car #1 full of laugagge, the kids, passports, everything goes directly to the airport. Car #2 heads out in the search of the nearest Cielito Querido Cafe. As we drove around Mexico City “following” Waze’s directions, we missed one and two exits, we turned right, left and ended up trapped in the traffic in a dangerous neighborhood.

4:30pm already and I am still relaxed, I am sure we will get there on time. Finally, we got back on track to find the coffeee place. We rushed into the store asking the barista for all our drinks, the order takes less than we expected and now we are heading to the airport.

4:50 we hit heavy traffic with no options but to keep going forward, a message from car #1 arrives indicating that closer to the airport the traffic is worse. I felt a little pressure but still thought we would be able to make it on time.

5:10pm we drive at 10mi/hr, I start thinking about the possibility of missing our flight; however, another message from car #1 indicates that they have reached the airport and are in line for checking the bags in already.

5:20pm we are parking at the airport feeling somehow safe after hearing laugagge is in and boarding passes on hand, and then…

5:30pm I told everybody that I wanted to have lunch with them, my family, I didn’t want to rush anymore, I wanted to spend more time with them. During the next 20min I was blocked, everyone was telling us that we were about to miss the flight, that lunch was not an option, hurrying us to pass security but I still got them to join me for lunch. I wanted to be there, see them, talk to them, touch them.

5:45pm we say our goodbyes, go through security, dodge people as we run passing all gates until we finally get to ours just to hear our flight was gone. I felt sorry for making my wife and kids go through this, she was worried of what just happened and her face was indescribable. I’m sorry wife, I love you.

For the next two hours or so I needed to fix this mess, find our laugagge, book new tickets, get a place to stay (that was the easy part), all while assuring everybody that I was mentally okay and this was just a small lapse.

Don’t ask me why I behaved like this last week, I still do not understand it. I am just happy to know that our families are always there to hold our back. The coffee, the airport rush, the lunch, waiting for us knowing we will miss the flight, their patience while I dealt with the situation, their smiles at the end of the day.

Thanks, I love the 11 of you so much.

2016 is over, what happened and what’s next?

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It has been a long time since I posted something on this blog, partially because ideas haven’t been around and also because time hasn’t  allowed it. As we embark on a new journey or cycle, year 2017 as we call it, I think it is the right time to make a pause and recap on 2016 and plan for the next 12 months.

You might remember my 2016 resolutions post, I set 3 goals for the entire year and here is the recap. 1) Finish at least two half-marathons – check, 2) Read six books not directly related to my job – check, and 3) Start learning a new language – hmmm missed. What did I learn from all of this? My first goal was SMART, Specific, Measurable, Atteinable, Relevant and Time-Bound, I even surpassed it by running 3 half-marathons. My second goal was SMART too; however, I lost sight of it. At the end, I met my goal with super exciting books but in a rush to gobble up what I didn’t read during the previous 345 days of the year. Finally, a very well intended but poorly planned goal. I didn’t have a strategy or spent the right amount of time to accomplish it. It didn’t specify the language I planned to learn, the level of proficiency I wanted to achieve and even worse I thought it was not even relevant at some point, so the smallest distraction made me avoid working on it. Everything else are excuses, spending more hours at work, achieving other non-planned goals, enjoying new family members, etc. These are just circumstances we need to manage all along, if we set our own goals we need to focus and work hard to achieve them, if they seem to be farther than expected then recalibrate and work harder, there is no other way to succeed.

Now, what’s there for 2017?

Sometimes destiny shoots new challenges at you, and by destiny I mean reactions triggered by  actions you have taken in the past. After spending many hours training for three half-marathons, counting calories and steps for a couple of health challenges with coworkers and talking nonstop about eating habits, my 2017 goals were kind of easy to set. Here we go:

1) Complete 2017 miles in 2017, this is a walk/run challenge I will complete with my wife as a team.

2) Complete an 11 minute abs routine for more than 300 days this year. The routine is comprised by the following exercises, an 8 min workout from 1994 and a 3 min workout from Bowflex.

There are so many other things ahead in 2017; however, these are the two goals I want to focus on during the next 12 months.

You may be thinking, what about his family or his work goals? Reality is that I enjoy my work every single day of the week, I take very seriously every single challenge that is thrown at me and I always seek for more to take on. As for my family, I can’t set time-bound goals, it has been an amazing ride that I hope lasts until my last day. From my parents, siblings, wife, in-laws and amazing kids I just want to keep enjoying, learning and sharing this incredible journey with you.

Progress as of July:

  • Overall steps: 984.47
  • Overall days of ABS training: 28 + 24 + 28 + 26 + 26 + 26 + 25 + 28 + 23 + 23 + 22 = 279

Disculpas para la afición

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Creo que una disculpa para la afición es muy merecida, ésta es para la afición de los 49ers de San Francisco por las condiciones en las que dejamos su estadio, para la afición de Chile y para aquellos que con respeto asistieron al partido de cuartos de final entre Chile y México. El día de ayer fue una vergüenza, dijeron los jugadores de México al perder 7-0, un día para analizar y sacar conclusiones, éstas son las mías.

Ayer fue el primer partido de México al que acudí como padre de familia, orgulloso de mi país de origen, inculcando ese orgullo y amor a mi hija nacida en USA. Vestida de verde, blanco y rojo, la cara pintada con la bandera tricolor y una banda verde en la cabeza como nuestro gran político contemporáneo Juanito.

Desde nuestra llegada al evento podíamos ver el incremento en la seguridad alrededor del estadio, normal en USA para un evento internacional con estadio lleno. Los trabajadores del estadio muy amables en cada momento, ayudando a los aficionados a tomarse fotos con la familia e incluso los elementos de seguridad permitiendo tomarse fotos como si fueran Mickey Mouse. Todo parecía un evento deportivo normal hasta que escuché los primeros insultos al arbitro, a los jugadores, a Trump y a cuanta persona que saliera en las pantallas del estadio con la bandera o uniforme de Chile. Aún faltaba más de una hora para empezar el partido, pero los aficionados ya estaban como si fuera el minuto 20 de la final de un mundial. Entiendo la pasión del futbol, entiendo que los estadios sirven para desahogarte de todas tus preocupaciones, estrés y problemas, lo que no entiendo es por qué cuando juega México o un equipo mexicano la gente se transforma de esta manera.

Durante casi año y medio hemos asistido a los partidos locales de la MLS, siempre llegamos con mucho tiempo de anticipación para comer y disfrutar de una tarde o noche con la familia y amigos viendo un partido de futbol profesional. En todas y cada una de esas ocasiones ha habido alcohol, porras del equipo rival, barras apoyando a nuestro equipo y en ninguna ocasión he visto golpes, cervezas volando desde la tribuna ni insultos mayores a un árbitro o jugador en la cancha. También he sido afortunado en asistir a partidos de futbol en Europa y aunque definitivamente los aficionados son más apasionados que en USA tampoco me había tocado vivir una experiencia como ayer.  Pero que no juegue el América o la Selección Nacional porque entonces gritos, sombrerazos, cervezas voladoras, mentadas y cualquier cantidad de expresiones que la afición piensa que nos hacen sentir más “unidos”, nos hacen “mexicanos de corazón”, que nos hacen parte de “los buenos”. 

Nos los conozco por nombre y posiblemente no los reconozca de cara, pero estoy seguro que muchos de ellos son los mismos que vienen a la MLS cada fin de semana y se comportan civilizadamente, los mismos que me encuentro en la oficina, el súper, el cine y que dan el paso a las mujeres, dicen gracias y saludan al llegar a algún lugar. Muchos de esos aseguro son los que cantan corridos, hacen fiestas coloridas, respetan a su madre y quieren a su patria a pesar de estar lejos de ella.

Hoy mi análisis es muy simple, el futbol es apasionante, nos une como nación, nos hace vibrar cada minuto y también saca lo peor de nuestra cultura. Sinceramente no es justificación que aficionados de otros países se comporten como delincuentes, insulten o destruyan los estadios, simplemente yo no comparto ese estilo de afición. 

Mi conclusión es que seguiré asistiendo a todos los partidos donde pueda apoyar a mi selección, apoyar a los equipos de futbol con los que crecí y disfrutar del deporte que más me gusta, el “pan-bol”. Para muestra, en dos semanas iremos a ver a mis Pumas en San José, California.

También concluí que seguiré inculcando a mis hijos la cultura mexicana que me enorgullece, esa que nos distingue en el extranjero y en casa, la misma que nos hace luchar por algo mejor cada día, la que está llena de sabores, colores e historias de Lloronas y el Chupacabras. Para ser mexicanos solamente tenemos que actuar como estoy seguro nuestras madres nos enseñaron, tenemos que respetar para ser respetados.

Espero que la disculpa sea aceptada, espero que nos sigan recibiendo en su casa.

Trip to the mother land…Mexico City 

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Wander around Mexico City downtown, this is what you should do if visiting the city. It is historical, beautiful, entertaining and safe.  La Diana Cazadora” is an emblematic monument situated in Reforma Avenue, place of many celebrations, public demonstrations and political controversy. Along with “El Ángel de Independencia“, she makes Reforma Avenue the epicenter of many social movements.

The colonial architecture is present everywhere you go, Government offices, Religious buildings, public centers, you name it. Other buildings, built more recently in the 1900’s blend with those from the colonial times, it is just amazing.

I won’t bother you with more commentary, I will let you enjoy some of the pictures we took and plant the seed for you to come to Mexico City…enjoy.
Just one more thing, be prepared to try some goodies on the streets. If you are not used to spicy food or happen to have a sensitive digestive system, don’t go the full nine yards but give it a try….100% worth it and safe.

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are──or, as we are conditioned to see it

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This is not the first time I think about this, however it is becoming more relevant as we are “conditioning” someone else to see the world as we perceive it. Today CG sees the world as mom and I understand it, through our lens, based on our past experience, the way we were taught and maybe even the way others want us to see it. I believe this is a very limited and distorted version of what the real world is, but it’s all I know, I can’t teach something I lack of.

I don’t want to be like those parents who are always lecturing their kids, giving them marching orders and forcing on them their narrowed way of thinking; nevertheless, I am not sure that I want to be my kids “friend” either. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to, if I can keep a clear line between friendship and parenthood. As a friend I would encourage them to skydive, as a parent I would show them pictures and stay down watching others doing it.

I’m sure there is only one way to figure this out, move forward, learn and try again. I wonder how many people take formal parenting training or if those even work, but I will sign up for it if things don’t go well in the first few years – maybe the fact that I’m writing this blog is a clear indication I need immediate counseling – we’ll see.