Between August 2012 and November 2012, I lived and worked in Querétaro.
During Peace Corps training, I lived in a beautiful city in Mexico’s central region, with a host family comprised of a grandmother, a grandfather, and their dog. On weekends, some of their grown children and young grandchildren come over for lunch. When I was not in my training class, I spent much of my free time with them, learning traditional Mexican cooking techniques, sharing stories from each other’s lives, listening to music, and tasting local delicacies at the many outdoor markets. They were very supportive of me during my learning process, and very eager to share their culture with me.
I lived there because I was training to be a Peace Corps Volunteer, trying to learn as much Spanish as possible. Life during training was very tiring because 1) I lived at high altitude, 2) it was hot during the afternoon, 3) I was in classes for 9 hours a day with additional homework, and most importantly 4) almost all of my days were lived in Spanish. The good news is that I quickly lost any hesitation to speak in Spanish, which made learning much easier.
I will have many opportunities to return to Querétaro; the Peace Corps headquarters resides here, and volunteers return on occasion for various programmatic requirements.