Saturday, October 16, 2010

Literal Literary Escapades

Seems that the easiest way to share snippets of the manymany things going on all at once in our pueblito and on the beach, is to create literary storylets, stealing famous titles for emphasis, viz:

I. "No Exit"
I have to laugh! We drove down the long windy unpaved road into our pueblito on the one and only day that we could have. Had we arrived one day earlier, the viscous deep mudholes on the way in would have swallowed our motor. One day later, and ...hey!... huge earthmovers arrived and gutted the road that goes through the village! They are STILL in the process of digging a deep continuous trench right down the center of it, from one end to the other, right past our house!

First -- the Big Trench that went all the way through the village, with manholes at intervals. The small trench pictured below that is in our yard. It is leading up to our to-be-built throne room -- and down to the manhole and trench for village-wide sewer service, gifted us by the state of Guerrero.

(Pictured below that is our response -- a trench from their manhole, up through our yard to where we will construct a small palace for our new porcelain throne.)

Evidently the government has decided that all pueblos deserve public toilet systems. Most folks here have septic systems however. Robert and I and our next'door neighbors seem to be the ONLY holdouts who don't even have a septic system. We actually didn't even want to bother with such an "improvement." I enjoy the winding walk through the jungly backyard with its flowers and butterflies and dancing sunlight. In this season especially, I like to watch the butterflies flutter around their evening's bedtime hanging vine, and then again, watch them as they awaken in the late morning sun and flutter sleepily in circles before heading out for their morning's sup of nectar. I can still take that walk, of course. But now, with modernity thrust upon us, we are discussing where (and when) to build a little shack for the porcelain throne...

II. "...'neath vine and fig tree..."

As a gift of friendhip, Guillermo planted a fig tree while we were gone. This morning, we ate the first fruit (things grow FAST here). Before this day, I've eaten only dried ones. But ahhhh! To me, a fresh fig, sweet and juicy, reminds me of the wonderful flavor of a ripe peach. Living here in our little personal Eden, we also have mango, lemon, tangerine, guava trees--what have I forgotten to mention?-- as well as copious flowering trees and plants all wreathed in butterflies and hummingbirds. But in keeping with the Biblical verse, we have also a grapevine (not yet producing). A home-made plowshare rests against the wall. We live in peace and unafraid.

(And from here on down, I am utterly flummoxed!! Adding photos is such a time-consuming DRAG, and I cannot even drag them to where they belong, so I will try to circumvent this by posting a new entry of ALL pix -- and you, gentle reader, may insert them mentally to the various essays. Good luck.)

III. "On the Beach"
Well, WE live in peace and unafraid, anyway. Besides the tranquility of the surf, sun and sky, there's a lot of ---um--- fascinating activity. We pay it no mind.

IV. " not build your house upon sand..."
But oh, they DO! Doesn't anyone read the Bible anymore? This past rainy season brought down retaining walls and created vast arroyos through beachfront property, threatening the very integrity of some structures -- for starters. We watch. None of this affects us personally, and we enjoy our days with friends along the shore, and play in the sea... And oh, the sunsets!

V. "For Whom the Bell Tolls"
My eyes are tearing up even as I begin to touch on this story. I've many times in this blog touched on edges of this story -- so involving, so tragic -- that it deserves a skilled novelist to tell it properly. It is ongoing through generations.... but now comes the first death that touches us.

Dear readers, you may remember my joyous love of a little boy, Gustavo/Luis (name change is part of the tale). He is FINE! As I wrote before, he has been happily adopted and when he visted last time we were here, he was talking, and vibrant and drew me a huge smiling yellow sun. It was his birth'mother who died...

She was murdered. Horribly. Slashed to death in a dangerous drunken cantina where she served drinks -- her body bore the large black stitches and gauze even on her face. On 10/10/10 she died. I don't know more than that. When WE knew her, when she lived next door still pregnant, she was vibrant and full of laughter. Peter! You remember her!

When her son was born, she was a loving, warm and attentive mother. She was proud of her son and her heart was open -- a clearly intelligent and playful young woman who wanted to do the very best for her child whom she named Gustavo. She came over every day with little Gustavo and we talked while he played on our porch.

We don't know why she left the pueblito and went to a city. Perhaps she hoped to make more money in order to support her treasure of a son. But things went wrong. Some villagers say it was drugs, some even say prostitution. The next time we saw her, which was also the last time that Robert and I saw her, she had already given her son up for adoption. She had come back to visit friends/family. Gustavo was also right there at the same casita, and already renamed Luis and already adopted. He showed no recognition that she was ever his mommy... He was and is a happy little kid tearing around absorbed in play. She on the other hand was dull, no light in her eyes, nothing to say -- a different person to the one we knew. She demonstrated no real recogniton of us as she sat beside us in silence for a short time. And then she just walked away.

The Wake was held next door -- where she was born as the fourth of five children; where her mother was secreted away to the States to escape a violent alcoholic husband... taking with her the three eldest children and leaving behind the now-deceased one and her little brother (who still lives there). The brother is struggling in his own way.

Motherless children have a hard time when their mother is gone.

One of the older siblings who was taken north, a sister, was caught by US migration as a grown woman and pregnant -- and sent back to this same house that she barely knew as a child. She still lives here -- and is pictured in this blog in an earlier entry.

But to speak now of the wake.... it was a peaceful, healing time. Villagers came over and helped clean up the yard and prepare it for the gathering. Edith's body was brought to the house for viewing (somehow, past all that trenchwork), and the people gathered on the porch and in the yard. Talk was very quiet and respectful. And then, the most beautiful singing. I learned that there is a group of women who practice these songs and come to all church activities. They led the mourners in beautiful healing songs. I could feel the healing music reach the soul of a woman who once held such beautiful dreams for her son... those dreams WILL come true.

And before dawn the following morning, the singers returned and awakened us (just next door) with their angelic songs....

...afterwhich, the church bell tolled, tolling now for Edith.