The Other Side
La Gente Mexicana
Mis gustan mucho la gente de Mexico. Por que? Te lodigo.
For the readers with an enquiring mind and some of you with recently acquired educations, in addition to cerebral types (you know who you are) I might suggest a short review of recent Mexican history which is most interesting and has a continuity of invasions, takeovers, wars, revolution, good and bad economic times and even recent scandals.
At first thought, because of this history, one expects a distrust or aloofness from the people here. There is in fact a very common but deep reaching by these people. It is for respect, civility, and honesty.
Obviously, I am no scholar of sociological occurrence as I have found that there is no distrust, dislike, rudeness or anything other than warmth, friendliness, mutual respect and politeness.
One need only demonstrate their genuine respect, civility and honesty and the outpouring of warmth is noteworthy. We should try this more at home.
The qualities which are impressive about the Mexican people are most assuredly due to the values which are inherently born to them. I revel in these simple yet powerful values and in fact, I realize that these were instilled in many of us as we we grew up. They are: family, good friends, optimism, social aptitude, love of celebration and music & laughter.
We have noticed that on any given Sunday, many a rather large family can be seen simply enjoying life and each other, always with food, drink, music, laughter and affection. So real that it can be touched. Mind you, the venue is quite simple, a walk, a boat ride, church, maybe a meal out.
Our Mexican hosts are outwardly proud of how many friends they have and with any instigation will tell you of their "amigos", and should you be called "amigo" you can be sure that is heartfully intended.
Given the present and fairly recent turmoil, economic and social, the optimism is remarkable. I asked a young man, named Francisco, after he washed Poseidon for us rather or not this was good work and he replied "Se vive bien" or one can live well. He continued that this is a good time of year, lots of "yates" and summer is coming, less "yates", however he is certain that this year will be better and by the way the fishing is promising to be okay so yes, Francisco, Se vive bien aqui.
Mexicans love social life, big groups, lots of noise, people, people, people. Any excuse for a party or simply a group of amigos talking, kidding, laughing and the never ending whistling is taken full advantage of. I have never heard so many whistles. Each one is unique and belongs to the whistler of it. A group, working together are directed in that work by whistles which communicate an unmistakable (not to us) message. Would I remain long in this country, I would have to learn to whistle. As my daughters know, I was never able to learn how.
Linda and I watched and both were touched one day last week. We were sitting at a restaurant, having just had mariachis play a wonderful rendition of "Malaguena Selerosa" followed by a song named "Paloma" played on a beautiful harp by a rather large man with the fingers and voice of an angel. Our maricahis moved to another table and asked if the occupants wanted a song. The man said no, indicating no time, and one of the players smiled, said gracias and turned away with a look of sadness as if to say, how is it possible that there is no time for music.
A description of a sincere smile, given so freely, by our wonderful hosts, cannot be described easily. It is a smile that shows in the eyes, the lips, the cheeks and the whole body language and radiates to a degree that you feel its depth.
Next time: Attitudes