Staying in a Hostel

When Older Adults Stay in Hostels

The photo above was taken in the courtyard of a hostel in San Cristobal, Mexico. It was a gorgeous place. There were a couple of private rooms, a couple of small rooms, a men’s dormitory-style room, and a women’s dormitory-style room. I stayed in the women’s dormitory-style room (bunk beds with accommodations for up to 8 women). There was a full kitchen available, and both indoor and outdoor tables for dining, all under roof for rain protection.

While I was there (end of May, 2013), it rained almost the whole time, and was rather cold. I had a water-proof jacket with me, but was chilly except when I was sleeping! We had a bonfire one of the nights I was there, and it was very nice!

Because young people don’t expect to meet up with an older adult in a hostel, we are asked some pretty interesting questions. I was there for three nights, and because it rained and was cold most of that time, more than the usual amount of time was spent talking with some of the other guests. However, everyone has limited time to see the sites, so rain or not, chilled or not, we all went out and saw what we could, anyway! Meeting people from all over the world is a treat, and because we all share the experience of traveling, the conversation can be quite lively! Everyone wants to know where you’ve traveled, where you are going next, and the best (and worst) things you have seen and done!

One of the young women invited me to go with her to see a very interesting museum. It was the museum of Mayan medicine. The museum site is still being used to grow and also distribute natural medicines to treat all kinds of afflictions! In the shop, there are charts on the walls explaining what each ingredient treats. The room on either side of the shop houses the equipment to process and package the herbal medicines. It was an interesting afternoon! And ladies, one thing I found particularly interesting was the way in which the Mayan women deliver their babies! Instead of lying down, they are on their knees, facing and between the knees of their partner who is sitting in a chair, and the midwife “catches” the baby as the baby is born! What do you think? Seemed logical to me……but I’m certainly no expert!

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