Briefly summarize your experience experience and what were the highlights?
I enjoyed this little trip so much! I liked that I had the opportunity to really get to know Melonie, not just as the head honcho, but woman to woman. This was my first time to Mexico, so that in it itself made it very memorable, but I do speak Spanish and I got to converse with locals which was very cool. I flew from my home state to the west coast and started off our journey to Mexico from Long Beach, California. I was so blown away by our room! We really got to lay back, relax, and enjoy our little space on the ship. People watching was made easy by our huge windows overlooking the pool deck. We spent our day at sea first getting to business while enjoying coffee. Then enjoying massages and the sauna. Our last day spent on the ship was when we got to do some shopping downtown. I scored some beautiful jewelry and goodies and finished off our day with getting our nails done. I went home feeling proud of both of my sides of myself.
As a cultural goodwill ambassador of Native American and Indigenous Peoples, what lesson or insight did you gain?
As a cultural ambassador, it was really interesting to see the similarities in clothing and jewelry. It made me really think into how some people in the U.S. believe we have an “immigration” problem, but these borders they are trying so hard to maintain are just made up lines. Our ancestors didn’t care about borders. They traveled, traded, and shared among one another.
What did you learn about the tribe/community/event?
I learned that although these borders exist and are strictly enforced now, the exchange in culture that happened hundreds and thousands of years ago is still alive and present. The influence that was left is still thriving. I liked seeing the similar styles of silver work and clothing in Ensenada than what I have seen in Arizona and New Mexico.