Changes in Christmas Break.


Crystal Garza, Editor

Up until approximately 2010, many hispanic families, including several families from Alliance would make a trip to their hometowns in Mexico for the holidays, (mainly Christmas and New Years). These trips usually lasted up to two months, and most students had to check out of school so the absences wouldn’t catch up to them. Now, however, that has changed and there seems to be a few reasons behind it. From the rate of violence that rocket fired in Mexico, to the expenses, and the amount of school work missed. 

First: the violence. Drug cartels started becoming prominent around 1989, but the violence wasn’t at its worst until about 20 years later. This is why a lot of families living in America decided to stay in America for the holidays rather than going down to Mexico. The violence was so bad that people were afraid to leave their houses. The violence usually only occurred and still occurs in bigger cities and at popular stopping point for traveling people. 

An example of this violence would be an event that happened to my uncle. I’m not sure how old I was, but I remember him telling me the story. He was traveling to Mexico to work on his house one day, and while on the road a vehicle stopped him. This vehicle had either one person or a couple guys in it. They asked for his money and phone at gunpoint. At this point, he was on the phone with his wife. My uncle immediately gave up all his money and phone. Scary instances like this make people less willing to travel or take their families to Mexico. 

The second downfall is the expense, and the amount of money needed to make a huge trip like this. In mexico everyone always wants to be doing something adventurous and sometimes that means traveling to bigger cities rather than staying at the ranch a town located in northern Mexico, consisting of very little towns surrounding it.  Gas money is what takes up most of the expenses on the trip. It takes 24 hours to get to the destination that my family usually goes to, which is a very long time on the road. There’s also a night where we stay at a hotel. Other expenses include grocery shopping, and buying snacks when making stops. Another money expense is the passport process, if you don’t already have a passport. The good things about converting your American money to Mexican money is that it’s a lot cheaper in Mexico. A dollar in the U.S. counts up to around 19 pesos in Mexico, and when buying snacks in Mexico it’s much less than 19 pesos. 

School work is inevitable, and so is labor. For most, it’s hard to ask for a vacation of 2 months. It’s an excessive amount of time to miss work or school. When missing school for one day, students can fall behind and have up to 8 assignments missed, especially in high school, so imagine leaving school for 2 months. Most people now need to work to make a living and taking months off can negatively affect their financial status. Most families have realized that priorities have grown and become important, and Making an extensive trip would be nice, but also hard to afford. 

These long vacations have become much shorter now. If anyone plans to make a trip most just plan to take it during Christmas break for a week or so. Living with your family in one big house is so fun and exciting, but it’s sad that these long vacations for most had to be cut short.