Tag Archives: Puerto Rico relocation

Spotlight City: Cabo Rojo

Don’t Miss Cabo Rojo!

If you are considering traveling to Puerto Rico, are new to the island, or just need a diversion from your daily routine in the metropolitan area, head to Cabo Rojo! Cabo Rojo, located on the very Southwestern tip of the island, is a small community that offers big time views. Those views, and much more, make Cabo Rojo a must-see despite its distance from San Juan.

Although a trip to Cabo Rojo and back can be completed in a day, it’s a long day of driving so most people make a weekend of it, staying in one of the many small hotels or paradors in the area. Grand Bahía Ocean View Hotel, one of these hotels, is sandwiched between the salt flats and the mangroves, providing a secluded area from which to watch the sun set. The chefs and wait staff at the on-site restaurant, Agua al Cuello, never fail to give you an unforgettable dining experience of fresh seafood and delectable desserts.

From the pool deck of Grand Bahía Ocean View Hotel you can see the Cabo Rojo Lighthouse off to the left. This is an ideal place for photographers and travel enthusiasts. El Faro Los Morillos (as it is called in Spanish) was constructed in 1882 to help sailors through the Mona Passage. Today it is one of Puerto Rico’s most picturesque sights. Set high above the Caribbean waters atop limestone cliffs, the Cabo Rojo lighthouse stands as a beacon summoning visitors and residents alike. Be sure to bring your camera because these are images you won’t want to forget. And keep children near you at all times since there are no guardrails to protect them.

On the other side of the lighthouse is Playa Sucia, a secluded beach for a refreshing dip after climbing the hill to the lighthouse. This inlet in the Caribbean Ocean is a favorite among locals, but can be a challenge to get to if you have kids or lots to carry. Our recommendation would be to pack light because the path is not always accessible via automobile. That way you can truly relax beachfront and enjoy the incredible view and warm sunshine.

For nature enthusiasts, the area also features the Cabo Rojo National Wildlife Refuge. Those up for a good hike will witness native birds and plants while wandering through the subtropical dry forest. In and around the Interpretive Center (open Thursday through Sunday) you can get more details about the history of the area, including the salt flats, as well as the birds that frequent the area. Guides are also available for a fee. Be sure to bring your sunscreen, bug spray, and water and wear appropriate clothing for hiking! The trails are not long, but the sun is hot!

As you can see, for rest and relaxation, Cabo Rojo is where it’s at! Make sure to include it on your Puerto Rican bucket list!

Watch for other Spotlight City posts from around Puerto Rico courtesy of your Relocation Specialist in Puerto Rico, Global Perceptions!

 

 

 

Developing a Personal Language Learning Plan

Developing a personal language learning plan

By: Julie L. Parenteau, Ph.D.

 

You have rung in the New Year and written your list of resolutions. Like many others, your list includes lose weight, exercise more, and learn a new language. After a week into the New Year, we ask, how are you doing with that list? How have your daily practices changed? Are you still committed to those resolutions?

 

If you are still doing them, terrific! Stick with it! If not, we want to help. People often decide that they are going to make sweeping changes in their lives, but do not really contemplate all that goes into making those changes happen. Ask yourself when, why, where, and how to get on the right path. When do I have the time to exercise? Why do I want to make this change? How do I find the support that I need to stay committed?

Change Just Ahead Green Road Sign with Dramatic Clouds, Sun Rays and Sky.

www.englishandculture.com

As language learning specialists, we want to help you develop a plan that will help you achieve your language learning goals this year. We believe that there are five main obstacles to learning a new language (or making other significant changes in your life). Those obstacles include: time, energy, money, commitment, and support. Though many people will use these obstacles as excuses not to do something, we believe they are the resources that make all the difference. Consider this…we all have time for the things we enjoy doing. They are important to us so we find time. Our jobs, kids and other activities drain energy from us, but yet we find more energy to forge ahead. We are a little short on cash this week, but if it is important to us, we always find a way to get the funds. We simply need to be committed. If the commitment is not there, we will never follow through. However, if we clear our minds and stay focused on the goal, nothing will deter us.

 

Learning a new language requires the same mindset. It requires changing the way we think about those so-called obstacles. By turning the challenges into small hurdles to jump rather than mountains to climb, we alter our brain chemistry and turn them into possibilities instead of limitations. That alone opens up our mind to thinking in a new way—something that is critical for learning a new language.

www.aischool.org

www.aischool.org

To learn a new language, we recommend establishing a learning plan. Start by determining how much time you can realistically set aside for learning. The key word there is ‘realistic.’ If you only have 10 minutes per day, then set that as your goal. Next, decide what time of day you can consistently set aside those 10 minutes. Set an alarm to remind yourself and actually use that 10 minutes to study. Now you cannot say you do not have the time.

 

Find yourself a proper study space. Make sure you have enough light and are comfortable in the space. Bring your materials (pens, notebooks, dictionaries, etc.) so you do not have to get up from the space during those 10 minutes. Those 10 minutes are for you to study. Do not let yourself be distracted by other things. Maintain your focus. Now you have the materials and location. They are no longer obstacles.

office design

There are many language programs out there that report incredible results, but many come with an incredible price tag. If your bank account is not very deep, start with some of the free apps like Duolingo or 50languages.com. Start to learn the basics with these programs before investing large sums in programs that often end up on your shelves or hard drives, never to be opened. See, money was just a small hurdle to jump.

 

Select a method that works for you. If you are an auditory learner, use CDs, podcasts, and other online programs where you can listen and repeat. If visual learning is more your style, write the words in your notebook. Highlight important things with bright colors. Use flashcards to repeatedly see the words. If you prefer to move around while studying, make sure you have some space. Act out the words. Stretch, strike a pose, dance, or get on your elliptical machine. Now you know how to make this happen.

 

Whichever method you choose, stick with it. Remember, learning a language does not happen overnight. You have to be committed for the change the take place. For many people maintaining that commitment is the biggest challenge. One of the best ways to stay committed is by having a support network to help. Get a language coach or tutor who can help you along the way. Family members may know the language and be willing to help, but our experience has been that students often prefer to learn from someone outside the immediate family. In that space students can make mistakes and learn from them without the embarrassment of being laughed at in front of their family.

www.1stopwellness.net

www.1stopwellness.net

With a dedicated time and study space, money in your pocket, a method that works for you, and a support network around you, you can do this! You can learn a new language! Make 2015 the year that you follow through on your resolutions by taking these steps. We will be here to help you along the way!

 

For more insight into learning foreign languages, please contact Global Perceptions. We are relocation and language specialists who want to help you and your family transition smoothly from life in one culture to another. Contact us TODAY! 

 

 

 

5 Tips for Bringing Fall to Life as an Expat

A healthy fall treat that will leave your house smelling heavenly!

5 Tips for Bringing Fall to Life as an Expat

By: Julie L. Parenteau, Ph.D., Owner/President of Global Perceptions

 

Fall is my favorite time of year. There’s something about the cool, crisp air ushering in the season that makes me feel renewed. Sipping hot chocolate after Friday night high school football games and picking apples from a nearby orchard add to my giddiness. Or at least

A healthy fall treat that will leave your house smelling heavenly!

A healthy fall treat that will leave your house smelling heavenly!

they did! Since moving to Puerto Rico eight years ago, I have seen precious little of the colorful trees shining in the setting sun. In Puerto Rico, there is only a slight difference from one season to another. So slight in fact, that I forget that seasons even change. That’s a pretty big change for a Midwestern girl accustomed to greeting the seasons with gusto.

Despite my change of venue, I have found ways to bring my favorite season to life, even in the Caribbean! Here are my top 5 ways to keep fall alive for expatriates living in Puerto Rico and other tropical locations.

 

1) Watch American Football

I am a HUGE Green Bay Packers fan! It’s hard to grow up in Wisconsin and not be. If American football is one of your passions, carry it to your new home and watch your team with local fans. Win or lose, cheer or jeer, get together as a family over nachos and chili, just like home. Sometimes even just the consistent schedule of games will help you recreate the fall feeling.

 

2) Bake, Bake, Bake

Get our your mixer and have a bake-a-thon! Fall without recipes made of pumpkin, apple and cranberry just wouldn’t be fall. Let the scents of cakes, breads, cookies, pies and muffins waft through your house, creating a sensation that transports you to the coziness of a fireplace-heated living room. Imagine yourself wearing flannel pajamas as you crack

A healthy fall treat that will leave your house smelling heavenly!

A healthy fall treat that will leave your house smelling heavenly!

eggs, even though you are likely in shorts and a tank top. If you think ahead, you can even have pumpkin spice and butterscotch shipped right to your door via online shopping! And you’ll have something delicious to eat afterward!

 

3) Buy a new sweater

The feel of a new sweater is such a fall thing. The softness and warmth that it emits even while on the store rack beckons the aimless shopper. Cashmere, knit, wool….they all call out, promising to comfort in the best and worst of times. And somehow you know that whether it’s a cool gray or warm cranberry color, you will be comforted by its thread.

 

4) Pick up scented candles

When you start dreaming of enjoying Saturday afternoon walks in the park, listening to the crunch of the fallen leaves beneath your hiking boots, you know it’s time to find a

Sometimes giving into  your desires is the best thing you can do!

Sometimes giving into your desires is the best thing you can do!

substitute. Candles work wonders! Pick up something that screams FALL to you. I personally like apple-scented candles, but there are lots to pick from. Find one that works for you and light it!

 

5) Get on the plane

For those times when the nostalgia simply takes over and you have to see, feel, hear, taste and touch the fall, get on the plane and reward yourself with a few days in a place that offers just what you need. Consider a trip mid-October to early November in places like Washington, D.C. or Kansas City. The temperatures still aren’t too cold during the day, but they offer crisp nights perfect for trying out that new sweater.

 

For more ideas on making your transition to Puerto Rico a positive experience, consult with the Relocation Specialists at Global Perceptions! We have the local experience, but the global reach. Visit us TODAY at http://global-perceptions.com/

 

“Linked to the My Global Life Link-Up at SmallPlanetStudio.com” – See more at: http://www.smallplanetstudio.com/2014/09/26/september-mygloballife-link-up/#sthash.UM54udoA.dpuf

Three Kings Day Across Latin America

By Kerri Applegate & Julie Parenteau

 

It’s a new year and the holidays are behind us, right? Not so fast! On January 6th Catholics around the world celebrate the last of the 12 days of Christmas, called Three Kings Day (or Epiphany). Religious tradition talks of how the three wise men traveled from afar (Africa, Europe, Arabia to be exact) bringing gifts for the new born king, Jesus. Such a long trip was certainly worthy of a celebration upon arrival! Never wanting to miss a party, Latin Americans recognize this holiday, but how they do so differs from one country to another.

The Three Kings

 

In Mexico, for example, Epiphany is celebrated with parades, parties and a delicious cake called Rosca De Reyes. A small doll of baby Jesus is hidden inside this cake to represent how he needed to be protected and hidden. The person that finds the hidden savior has the honor of preparing tamales for another holiday called Fiesta de la Candelaria on February 2nd. She or he becomes the “godmother/godfather” for the year.

 

 

Peruvians in Lima, a city that was founded on January 6th, offer gifts to a live infant who is spread on a blanket in the Andean market. Men dress in traditional clothing and bring small tokens to the baby. A couple representing Mary and Joseph also stand nearby. Like in Mexico, people in Peru cook Kings Cake and hide a plastic doll inside. Whoever finds the baby is said to have luck all year. That person is also responsible for bringing the cake the following year!

 

For Puerto Ricans, the three kings arrive on camel during the night. Children leave small boxes with fresh grass in them (to feed the camels!) under their beds with the hope that the kings will leave gifts behind. On the morning of January 6th, children awake to open gifts. Families attend church and local parades where children can see the kings walking by. People celebrate by eating and drinking holiday favorites like lechon (roasted pork), arroz con gandules (rice with pigeon peas), and coquito (a rum-laced egg nog). Traditionally this day was more popular than Christmas, but close ties to the U.S. have made Christmas almost as popular.

 

Of course these are not the only ways to celebrate this day, but perhaps seeing these makes you interested in what other holidays are celebrated in Puerto Rico and beyond. Stay tuned as we will post more cultural insights throughout the year!

 

For more information on the culture and life of Puerto Rico, or for assistance relocating to Puerto Rico, visit http://global-perceptions.com/. We are your relocation authority in Puerto Rico.

Dancing Through the Adaptation Process

Dancing Through the Adaptation Process

by Julie L. Parenteau, Ph.D., President of Global Perceptions

 

As a newcomer in Puerto Rico, I was looking for ways to immerse myself in the local language and culture so that my cultural adaptation process would be a little smoother and so I would be a more credible intercultural communication professor. One of the things that really intrigued me about Puerto Rican culture was salsa dancing. I asked around on campus and one of my students told me about a place nearby that was starting salsa lessons. I vowed to find out more. The following week, my cultural orientation to life in Puerto Rico grew to include what would become an incredible personal passion. Let me tell you how it all started….

Y todo comenzo....

Y todo comenzo….

Seeing the line of people standing outside the local club, I feel anxiety rise within me. I took some salsa lessons in the States, but this is Puerto Rico, home of all things related to salsa, and that alone makes me nervous. Stepping out of the car, I slowly walk the dark street to join the line. I have no idea what I will find inside, but I am hopeful. I love salsa music and the dances that accompany the music so this will be an adventure. The line moves and within minutes I walk into the space. Noticing how many people are inside already, I wonder, “Is it really possible that all of these people fit in here? And how can we dance like this?” Looking around, I spot another American guy and walk up to introduce myself. He greets me and tells me he’s from Iowa. “What a coincidence,” I think, “another Midwesterner who looks like me and lives here, but speaks fluent Spanish and is interested in salsa dancing.” I didn’t think there were any other people like me around so this is a nice twist. We talk for another minute before the instructor steps onto the stage.

“Damas y caballeros, bienvenidos a nuestra primera clase de salsa,” the instructor begins adjusting the microphone attached to his lapel.

salsa cambio en clave

Cambio en Clave! The key to my success!

The wide-eyed audience looks at him, waiting for the first step. My new friend and I get into a line of people and face the instructor.

“Uno, dos, tres, cinco, seis, siete.”

Trying to see around all the others in front of us, our feet begin to move. “Oh yeah, I remember this!” Thankful for the previous lessons, I blend into the rest of the group as much as a white girl can. The class continues as we learn the first few steps. This part is easy.

“Ahora vamos a hacer las vueltas,” the instructor calls with a smile in his eyes.

Uncertainty waves through the audience as everyone starts talking to each other about how difficult turns are. Personally, I am wondering how we’re going to attempt turns when we’re packed in this space so tightly. Then I think about how easily Puerto Ricans fit their cars into the most impossible places and figure that if they dance like they park, this won’t be so bad. With a quick reminder of the order of the steps, I catch on. “Gosh have I missed this,” I admit. Feeling a bit nostalgic, I look around at the other people. Most people seem to be getting the idea. There is one guy however, who just can’t seem to make his feet move in the right order. Believing that I have enough skills at this point to teach him this basic turn, I offer to help him. After a couple of minutes he is turning on his own. “Mission accomplished!” I gloat, wondering if he ever thought a gringa would be teaching him salsa.

Putting new moves to the test!

Putting new moves to the test!

As the class comes to an end, I look to my American friend and ask if he’ll be back next week. He assures me that he’ll be there and we part ways. I drive home thinking that maybe despite all the other issues that I’m having, something about this country has redeeming value. I commit to making space in my schedule to participate in these salsa lessons each week because they make me believe that there is hope for me on this island.

 

Adapting to a new culture is challenging for all. If you are thinking of moving to Puerto Rico, I can help. I have been through the adaptation process in personal and professional settings and want to help you avoid the pitfalls that I discovered along the way. Don’t hestitate! REACH OUT TODAY and learn what it takes to successfully adapt to the culture and language of Puerto Rico!

Global Perceptions is a full-service communication and relocation consulting business based in San Juan, Puerto Rico. For more information on our services, visit www.global-perceptions.com or call 787.455.7764.

Cultural Orientation Services for Your Relocation to Puerto Rico

Global Perceptions offers the complete package! By Julie L. Parenteau, Ph.D.

 

Have you had a cultural orientation program for your move to Puerto Rico that left you with more questions than answers? Have you had a poor experience with your relocation agent? Have your family members struggled to adjust to the life and culture of Puerto Rico? Has your job as an expatriate executive been impacted as a result? Do you feel left out because language lessons were not included in your relocation package?

Come and see the jewel of the Caribbean!

Come and see the jewel of the Caribbean!

If this has been your Puerto Rican relocation experience, then we are glad that you have discovered Global Perceptions. Our custom-designed services offer you and your family members thorough, honest, and ethical cultural orientation programs. We assess the needs of your family and then design cultural orientation training curriculum to meet those needs. We make certain that everyone, down to your treasured family pet, knows what it takes to successfully adapt to life in Puerto Rico.

But we do not stop there! We also provide language learning courses for all ages. We want you to adapt to your new culture effectively and recognize the need for language

Our President teaching an English Class

Our President teaching an English Class

skills to achieve this goal. For this reason, we offer individual and group language courses for both Spanish and English learners. Classes focus on teaching you to communicate in everyday situations as you work to adjust, while also helping you understand what others are saying.

Additionally, Global Perceptions works with expatriate executives to increase their understanding of what it means to work with local employees. As newcomers in the local culture, learning business etiquette and protocol is essential to obtaining corporate objectives. We know that and work with you to navigate this important piece of the relocation process. Your success is imperative to us!

Global Perceptions offers you and your family the complete cultural orientation package. We know what it takes to successfully adjust to the culture of Puerto Rico because we have been through that process ourselves. Our staff will be there for you and your family every step of the way as you adapt to living in Puerto Rico.

Do not wait! Contact us TODAY! Register for our FREE newsletter and learn more about our services at http://www.global-perceptions.com/

Two hours to the beach

261

Written by Julie L. Parenteau, Ph.D., President of Global Perceptions Communication and Relocation Consulting

 

I have had an interesting journey through my almost seven years in Puerto Rico. Until recently, I didn’t think that my story was all that special. A dear friend convinced me that we are all meant to tell our stories. With that in mind, I have gone back through my early writings to share some of my adventures with you.

 

Two hours to the beach

trafficIt’s now been two weeks since I arrived on the island. Determined not to let another day go by without a trip to the beach, I pack my sunscreen, towel, and a fashion magazine. Sliding my sunglasses over my ears, I give myself a pep talk and get into the red Honda that I am borrowing for the day. I slowly back out of the driveway and make my way onto the Expreso. Driving amidst the other cars on the highway is still my biggest fear. Not only do I have no idea where I’m going, but people constantly cut me off under the assumption that a turn-signal is an unnecessary form of communication. That really ticks me off. Back home someone who forgets to use their turn signal is considered rude. It’s only polite to indicate your desire to turn in a certain direction, allowing the surrounding traffic ample time to get out of the way. Knowing that it’s likely someone is going to cut me off, I pay extra attention to the surrounding traffic, often missing the sign for my exit.

 

But today, I am determined to find the one beach that I know how to access. There is no entrance fee and there is usually ample parking, so going to Isla Verde sounds ideal. Approaching the tunnel, several cars zoom from lane to lane in front of

minillas tunnelme. It’s dark in the tunnel and the lack of turn signals frightens me. I have no idea which way to go and am afraid to move from my position for fear of hitting someone. In the process of thinking through all of this, I veer to the left, heading toward San Juan. After a mile, I realize that I have made a mistake. I should have gone to the right as I exited the tunnel. Trying to correct my error, I pull off the highway and find myself in Condado. I recognize a few familiar sights. The water is several blocks away, but I can make out the crystal blue color in the distance.

“Well, I could go to this beach instead,” I say out loud. Changing my original plan, I look around for a parking space. After several blocks there is no space to be found—at least not any that I am willing to pull into in a borrowed car. I travel down a cross street trying to find a way back to the highway. The road seems to go East so I keep following it, hoping that it will eventually get me to Isla Verde. Feeling more confident, I travel on. Ten more minutes go by and then it appears on the horizon—El Morro. “How could this be? I was sure I was going toward Isla Verde.” Not knowing whether to laugh or cry at this point, I keep driving. “Eventually I am going to reach Isla Verde,” I state hesitantly.

261

I manage to get out of Old San Juan without too much trouble since I stayed in a hotel there on a previous trip. Passing by an area of hotels and restaurants that I recognize, I begin to get comfortable again. This time I am definitely going toward Isla Verde. I can see the highway and carefully merge with the traffic again. I go South, assuming that I’ll be able to get off near the tunnel and turn around.

 

“This looks like a promising exit. Let me take this one.” I pull off and immediately realize that this is not the exit that I should have taken. Again I am forced to search through the streets for an entrance back to the highway. Block after block passes, but I have no idea where I am. Eventually I realize that I have been driving the wrong way in a bus-only lane when a not-so-kind sizzlertaxi driver scolds me from his own vehicle. Feeling exasperated and frustrated, I finally find something that looks familiar. To my chagrin it looks familiar because I was just at this same spot twenty minutes earlier. For the third time in the last hour I pass by the Sizzler.

 

“Maybe I’m not supposed to go to the beach today,” I confess. Ready to give up, I get back on the highway and decide to go back home. Along the way, my determination rears its head again. By the time that I reach the exit for my neighborhood, I decide to try one more time. Now I know that I have to go to the right in the tunnel so maybe I will actually get there if I just start over. With a sense of renewed confidence, I turn the car around.

 

Half an hour later, I finally park the car in front of the beautiful blue waters. “I did it!” I find a space under a large palm tree and spread my towel over the fine grains of sand. Settling into an article in my magazine, I congratulate myself on overcoming the challenge of getting to this beach. It took me two hours, but I finally did it, and I did it all by myself. “See Julie, you just need some practice. You’ll get the hang of this,” I tell myself. Ten blissful minutes pass by and then they come—big, wet raindrops. “Just my luck, I guess I really wasn’t meant to be on the beach today.” I toss my wet towel and beach bag in the back seat and decide that a mid-afternoon nap could offer a bit of reprieve from what has happened over the last few hours. Fortunately by now, I know the way home.100_0117

 

For more information on Global Perceptions or its President, Dr. Julie Parenteau, please visit http://globalperceptions.net/ or our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/Relocation.Specialist.PuertoRico

In the Beginning

Nearly seven years ago I got on the plane in Chicago and landed in San Juan. As I reached for my oversized suitcases at the lower level baggage claim, a man said “I hope you’re moving here with all those bags.” I responded, “Yeah, I am, thanks.” Assisted by one of the porters, I managed to get my luggage out the door. Outside the gate some Puerto Rican friends that I met in graduate school greeted me beneath the stars and humidity-drenched air. We stopped by the grocery store for a few essentials and then they took me to the house where I would stay while I searched for an apartment. That was how my journey started…

 

The first two weeks were the worst. My original plans for making the move had changed and I was now all on my own. It was early July so it was really hot and sticky, which caused the power to go out on several occasions. Not only was there no air-conditioning in those moments, but there was no fan and I couldn’t get the electric garage door open to leave. I was miserable. To add to that, I didn’t know where anything was and didn’t speak Spanish like the locals despite having studied Spanish for years. And the idea of venturing into what I deemed “treacherous traffic” was frightening, especially when driving a friend’s car. I began to wonder if I had made a big mistake.

 

Luckily for me, I found a small studio where I could live for as long as I needed. This at least gave me a project to develop. I ventured to the Kmart down the road and picked up a few furnishings, bed sheets, pots, and silverware. I tried to make the space my own as much as possible so I could begin to feel comfortable. It wasn’t exactly home, but it would work until a better option came along.

 

When my friends came back from vacation, I felt much better. At least I had someone to talk to and was no longer alone. They were very kind to me. We hung out a lot in the beginning and they filled me in on a lot of the “dos and don’ts” of living in Puerto Rico. When life got tough, they were there to support me and encourage me to keep going.

 

School started about six weeks after my arrival. Having a job and being surrounded by students gave me a sense of purpose. I was somebody, not just a shadow in a cramped room. As with any new job, the learning curve was steep, but my students
genuinely wanted me to succeed. They taught me about the culture and told me about places to visit. They made a difference in my life. I began to feel more confident as the semester progressed.

 

But that was just the beginning…

 

Seven years later, I look back on that experience and am surprised by how vividly I remember those initial feelings. It has been a long, hard road, but the friends that I have made along the way have helped me learn that taking the path less traveled opens up so many more possibilities in life. I would like to thank them and my students. I wouldn’t have made it without them.

Finding home away from home in Puerto Rico

By Julie L. Parenteau, Ph.D.

 

As another Super Bowl fast approaches, I am reminded of one of the main reasons that I continue to live in San Juan. I am a huge Green Bay Packers fan, as many people from Wisconsin are. I grew up watching the games with my dad. He taught me the basics, sharing stories of Bart Starr and Ray Nitschke along the way. Today I uphold the game-watching tradition in a different way. Now I have the unique opportunity to share my culture with the Puerto Rican community every Sunday from September through the first week of February. Unfortunately, it wasn’t always that way.

When I first moved here, I was clueless as to how I was going to watch the Packer games. Knowing that I was too big a fan to miss the games, I had to find a place to watch and soon. I went to the only local bar that I had ever been to and pulled up a stool only to find that I was the lone Packer fan in the place. My rants and cheers more than made up for that. People gave me weird looks, but I didn’t care. I was there to support my team. The season ended as it started for me, alone in the corner.

The following year I put on my gear and headed out, anticipating another lonely year in the corner. Much to my surprise, the bar was jam-packed when I arrived on the first Sunday of the season. People of all different teams filled the area, except for Green Bay. I found a TV with the Packers game on and decided that I would just have to suffice with that. At least I could see it, although I couldn’t hear a thing. Feeling let down, I looked around for a chair. In that move my life changed forever. I turned around and saw a couple walk through the door dressed from head to toe in green and gold. It was as if heaven’s gates had opened and Saint Vince had reached down to bless me! I walked over to them and asked if I could sit with them. They agreed and led me through the bar to a section that I didn’t even know existed. It was there that I first laid eyes upon what was to become the Puerto Rico Packer Nation. A sea of green and gold jerseys and caps was before me. I instantly felt at home.

Since that time, the Puerto Rico Packer Nation has grown to a much larger group who gets together to watch the games every week. We provide t-shirts, hats, and beads for those attendees who aren’t sporting green and gold. That gesture has helped the group become a family.

Today, we are all each other’s brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles. We count on one another when things are bad and relish in the happiness of the good times. We are a shining IMG_0138example of what it means to be affiliated with the Green Bay Packers organization. No matter the distance, we are fans to the end.

Although we won’t be watching our team play in the Super Bowl this year, we will all join together to cheer on our extended family members whose teams are fighting it out for they, too, are our brothers and sisters. We are a football family.

 

 

This reflection is dedicated to the members of the Puerto Rico Packer Nation, the Packers friends that I have met over the years, and my parents who provide the supplies for our local family. Go Pack!

 

“Linked to the My Global Life Link-Up at SmallPlanetStudio.com – See more at: http://www.smallplanetstudio.com/2014/01/31/link-up-jan/#sthash.8BseqTQV.dpuf

Importance of cultural adaptation training in Puerto Rico


window in old san juanThe day has come! Your big move to Puerto Rico is before you! Your entire family, including the family pet have landed on the Island of Enchantment with visions of days spent on the beach in your heads. Just beyond those wishful thoughts, it’s likely that there’s also some uncertainty, confusion, or even disbelief swimming around. Even though Puerto Rico falls under the government policies of the United States, it is not the United States. Things work differently here and if you want to understand how they work, one of the best ways is to participate in a cultural adaptation training program. Cultural trainers, like those at Global Perceptions, offer insight and experience that only those who have been through the adaptation process can really understand.

Take it from me, Dr. Julie Parenteau, President of Global Perceptions, living in Puerto Rico without any cultural or linguistic knowledge makes life very difficult. When I moved here in 2006 communicating with native Puerto Ricans was extremely challenging both because I had trouble understanding them, and because they didn’t understand the words I learned during 10 years of Spanish instruction. Not having a corporate sponsor also forced me to do everything on my own. If I had had a Global Perceptions cultural training program, I would have understood more and had fewer problems during my cultural transition.

Without such a program, I spent the first three years perpetually lost. It didn’t matter where I went, I would get turned around all because I didn’t understand where anything was in relation to anything else. I got in the wrong lines, wound up in areas where a single woman shouldn’t have been, spent much more than necessary for everyday services, and generally felt frustrated.

playa sucia

This doesn’t have to be your experience! Don’t allow yourself to agonize and lose sleep over your relocation to Puerto Rico. Make the decision today to invest in yourself with our cultural adaptation training programs! Puerto Rico is an amazing country with so much to offer, so let us help you navigate your trip.

 

For more information about cultural adaptation training programs offered by Global Perceptions, your relocation authority in Puerto Rico, contact us at 787.455.7764 or visit our webpage: www.globalperceptions.net. We will happily prepare a proposal free of charge!

« Older Entries