A Quick Update

In 2010, we moved back to the small town in Colorado that I never stopped missing while we lived in Mexico. Now I sometimes miss Mexico, but I wouldn't travel as freely as we did when we were there, camping out in remote areas and so forth.

Mexico today is in a period of change, and in many ways it is more dangerous now. That said, I have plenty of American friends who still live there very happily, just taking a few more precautions than they did in the past.

Just to say!


Visit Expedia…

Expedia is my favorite place to book airfare, and they handle hotels, car rentals, cruises, etc. I like the organization of the site for figuring out what flights I want. Click on the suitcase to take a look.

I was very pleased to win an award for this blog! Even better for you: click through for lists of all sorts of award-winning travel blogs.

Tripbase Blog Awards 2009

Tripbase Blog Awards 2009

Nov. 2, 2006 — A couple of days ago Kelly flew to San Francisco from Guadalajara, and he will be gone for a good part of November, teaching natural building concepts in Saudi Arabia! I’m staying with Crestone friends John and Amanda and their toddler daughter, near the town of Chapala, maybe half an hour from our house in San Juan Cosala. People in the neighborhood will be feeding our cats, and I’ll go home at times. It’s a nice arrangement, and is keeping me much more cheerful than if I were alone.

Our dog Larry is staying with me. He’s already discovered the joys of scrounging under a high chair, where Cheerios, cheese, bits of tangerine we’ve picked fresh from the tree outside, and other treasures may be found.

Yesterday had a great flow to it. Amanda has been working on her Ph.D. dissertation for years and I’ve been helping her lately with occasional editing and discussion. Well, yesterday morning it looked as though she might finish it before lunch, so she and I decided that if she did we would go out to lunch.

She didn’t make that deadline, but she got the thing emailed off about six in the evening. We whooped and hollered and high-fived a bit, then she, John, the baby, and I drove into Ajijic for a celebratory dinner out.

We went to Pedro’s, which has a really delicious international menu, and we had excellent dinners in a lovely setting. We admired a fine exhibit of artwork related to the Day of the Dead, which was yesterday and today in Mexico. That’s what Amanda is standing in front of in the photo.

The restaurant is not too far from the Ajijic cemetery, so we drove over there after dinner to see what was going on. I hadn’t been in the western part of Ajijic, between the highway and the lake, and was pleased to see that for many blocks it was a typical Mexican town. Here and there along the cobblestone street we saw memorials that people had constructed on the sidewalks, with candles, flowers, and photos of the dead.

The street was blocked right opposite the cemetery, and a carnival was set up. How very Mexican! There were a few rides, with kids on some of them, along with other carnival-type booths and several food booths.
People were coming and going at the cemetery entrance, and I noticed one woman in tears. Nobody seemed to think it strange when we went in too. The dark cemetery was illuminated by candles placed on many of the graves, but we were glad of the moonlight to help us pick our way  through the closely spaced graves. If there were actual paths, I didn’t see them.

One raised grave had a lot of candles. The name of the person was there on a hand-written sign, along with the dates: he was born March 3 and died April 26. Since no year was given, I guessed he was an infant. The dirt of the grave had a group of little skeleton dolls newly arranged on it, on a neat little path. It was a very sweet memorial.

We wandered for quite a while. Many of the graves just had candles on them, others had streamers or decorations of various kinds. From bits we overheard, it seemed that people would be back today. I heard one guy asking his wife if she had remembered to bring the Chiclets. I believe that people are having picnics in the cemetery today with their dead.

It was a very moving scene. From time to time, we would pass close to a Mexican and exchange a quiet "Buenas Noches" greeting. As we walked, I thought of my own dead grandparents, parents, dogs, and friends. How good it was that Amanda’s work took all day and we ended up with this walk.

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