This weekend marked the halfway point of my Clinical Experience in Nicaragua. My abroad experience, being only two weeks, is shorter than most, but I feel like I have grown tremendously since I started only one short week ago. This weekend, other clinical experience participants and I stayed overnight in San Juan del Sur for a short respite out of Granada to see other parts of Nicaragua. Typically, my day to day experiences in Nicaragua do not include amenities that I would venture to say we Americans most likely take for granted, or at least do not think twice about.
A prime example of this is air conditioning. Currently, it is winter here in Nicaragua, but that only means it rains more making everything a bit cooler, but still it is consistently around 90 degrees and humid. Now, believe it or not, in one short week, I have grown accustomed to this. Do not get me wrong, I do sweat much more than normal, but I sleep well at night with my trusty fan. However, my weekend at San Juan reaffirmed how much of a difference there is between not having air conditioning and having it. We had to monitor the usage of our amenities for environmental concerns, but I would say we all thoroughly enjoyed having the availability of air conditioning in a tropical location.
I do not believe people talk much about air conditioning in their abroad experiences, but to me the revelation of lifestyle differences between Lesser Economically Developed Countries (LEDC) and More Economically Developed Countries (MEDC) been one of the most resonating points of personal growth I have had since I have arrived in Nicaragua. Being from Alabama, I personally find it hard to imagine a hot summer day without the availability of a reprieve in air conditioning. And yet, the Nicaraguans show the utmost generosity and patience towards my classmates and myself despite, most arguably, having “less” than us. It has been a enjoyably humbling experience and I cannot wait for this upcoming week.