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Crossing the river before summiting 17,500 Pico Austria. Photo by Ella Williams (2016 Fall Semester Photo Contest, 2nd Place), South America Semester.

The Beginner’s mindset

As we quickly become accustomed to our current life in Urubamba, Peru, I can’t help thinking about what it means to have a beginner’s mindset in a familiar place.

As you may already know, I came to Urubamba 2 years ago with Visions, a community service program over the summer, and although I have seen this city before and wandered its streets, there are many things that seem unfamiliar. As opposed to living in a sort of “compound” (which is now owned by CondorTravel), living in a homestay with Soledad has given me a completely different perspective of this city. When I meet new people, the instant connection feels deeper than before. Roaming the streets with fellow dragons, I feel more adventurous than I had been last time. Dominating the surrounding mountains with Hugh and the view of the valley from the sky gives me a completely different view of Urubamba that I simply could not have imagined during the two weeks that I had spent with Visions.

Experiencing this city in the past week has already been so full of new experiences, and, taking a step back, I realize that I did not know this city. I still don’t know this city. When we leave in the end of November, I still will not know this city. What I have learned from Urubamba, above all else, is that a beginner’s mindset is essential whenever you visit, or even revisit any place or experience.

Just something I’ve been thinking about lately :).