Facebook

1,2,3… 4,129… 4,130…

Facebook

It happens far too frequently; I wake up, my eyes snap open, and I immediately know three things to be true:

  1. It is not yesterday, and today has barely begun.
  2. I’ve not had nearly enough sleep.
  3. And I’m certain I will not get even 5 more minutes of it… until God knows when.

I have been a “poor sleeper” for about 15 years. I have tried every remedy known to man, woman, conventional doctor, and quack too. Nothing helps. I don’t bother trying anymore. Not much I can do; it is just “one of the things” I don’t seem to have a handle on.

I have learned how to find my glasses and my phone, make tea, and navigate my way to the guestroom; all in pitch-black darkness. I make no noise as I settle down under the covers of the guest room’s comfy queen-size. After few sips of the hot herbal brew, I open up Facebook. This is when I learn about all kinds of nonsense, and also read some interesting stories.

Tonight was not an exception; did you ever hear how Sir Alexander Fleming’s farmer-father saved the life of then-still-a-boy, Winston Churchill? In gratitude, Winston’s wealthy father paid for young Alex’s education, right through Med School at Oxford. Later, the penicillin he discovered again saved now-adult-Winston from pneumonia. Alas, charming as the story is, it belongs in the nonsense file because it never happened.

I waded through my feed of same-old, same-old U.S. political B.S. I sometimes wonder why we who live in Mexico are so consumed by what the Bully does. There’s an easy answer to that; we are terrified of what he’ll “do” next. Meanwhile the Democrats continue their infighting and dithering-about. Of course the longer they delay choosing a candidate, and thrusting him or her into the fray, the more chance he-who-cannot-be-named has to increase his “base”.  What is happening with Mexico’s politics is out-of-the-box, but as I say, I wish the international community had more interest in this. I know people fear getting “involved” in local politics because it is not allowed, but it is still important to “know” what’s going on in the country where we live.

Next I read about what matters to me: my friends. A local baker who visits the prison to motivate inmates…  Antonio, you are such a surprising man. You find ways to make the world better, one baguette at a time. I learned that a friend I haven’t seen for some time has taken up pottery and she published photos of her new pieces. Debi, the creativity oozes out of you and into that clay. I also found out that a long-ago friend who has moved back to Merida is almost finished her house reno’. Betsy, I can’t wait to see you and your home. People are traveling; Kevin, your insights are so cool. Others, like me, have company staying for a while. Emma and I had a little soiree yesterday; not earth-shattering news to anyone but us. But I’ll post a picture anyways.

When I was younger and would wake up, I used to read. But my older eyes quickly get sore unless it is daytime. So, for times like this, I am glad to have Facebook. Sweet dreams to all.

 

Illuminating… think about it

A lovely little bird sent this to me…

(The following post is not my writing. The author is unknown , but the piece was sent to me by Jeannie H., my long-time friend and colleague. I could not have expressed the sentiment better. I posted it on facebook but not everyone I know is a member…  so for you too, here it is)

Think about this and if you agree…  pass it on…

***

Gringo (a): – Hi, where are you from?

Mexican: – Hi, I’m from Mexico

Gringo (a): – Ah! The land of Chapo Guzmán, narcos, marihuana, crime and extortion.

Mexican -I’m sorry, are you a drug addict or a TV junkie?

Gringo (a) – No!!! Why?

Mexican -Because if you were an athlete or sports fan, you would have identified Mexico with Ana Guevara, Hugo Sanchez, Julio Cesar Chavez, Finito, Chicharito Hernandez, Canelo Alvarez, Rafael Marquez, etc.

If you were an educated person, you would have asked about the Aztec empire, the Mayan culture, the Olmecs or any other of the great mesoamerican cultures.

If you were a well traveled person you would have talked about our majestic archaeological sites, our tourist-friendly colonial cities, our megalopolis or our exotic beaches… the astonishing biodiversity of our rainforests, mountain ranges, deserts, conifer forests…

You could have identified Mexico with our great painters, Diego Rivera, Rufino Tamayo, Frida Khalo, José Clemente Orozco; our composers: Agustín Lara, Consuelo Velázquez, Armando Manzanero, Juan Gabriel Jose Alfredo Jimenez, our writers and poets: Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Juan Rulfo, Octavio Paz, Juan José Arreola, Elena Poniatowska, Amado Nervo, Jaime Sabines;

our inventors or scientists: Manuel Mondragón, Guillermo González Camarera, Luis Ernesto Miramontes; our cinematographers: Ismael Rodríguez, Emilio Fernández, Alfonso Cuaron, Guillermo del Toro, Alejandro González Iñárritu, Emmanuel Lubezki, and even Luis Buñuel, who, being originally from Spain, chose to adopt the Mexican nationality…

If you were a gourmand, you would have asked about Tamales, Cochinita Pibil, Mole, Adobo, Chilaquiles, Chiles en nogada, Guacamole, Pan de Muerto, etc. Or our traditional beverages: Tequila, Mezcal, wines and beers.

However, I can see, the only thing you can relate to Mexico is the provider to American drug addicts…

I just want you to realize that México is a lot more than what ignorant people and fear-mongering media knows or chooses to propagate.

There are millions of honest Mexicans, who even without knowing you, will open the door to our homes, and that if you care to visit, you will love to get to know us and to visit us. Mexico is even more than I can possibly tell you!

¡VIVA MÉXICO!

Author unknown

PS: I have also posted a slide show that depicts the real face of Mexico. The photographer is well known to me… he is my son, Carlos. Life has gotten so busy for him, and he has not taken many photos lately…. But I hope he gets back to it because he is excellent. BTW, he not only photographs people… Have a look at his work: http://carlosrosado.blogspot.com

The U.S.A. just ain’t what she used to be…

Point Roberts, Washington

I grew up on the Canadian – American border, and our family spent some summers at Point Roberts and South Beach, in Washington State . I remember tidal pools and sand bars teeming with crawly creatures we would catch, and then release when the tide rose..

Although these two communities are located on a tiny peninsula below the 49th parallel, the only way to reach them by land is to drive through British Columbia. We liked playing with the American kids we met there, even if they did spin tall tales about the fish they caught.

One Fourth of July, an American girl invited me to her family’s celebration. I remember her adorable baby brother dressed in red, white and blue rompers.  We paraded around the yard with toy drums and whistles until an over-excited  beagle jumped into the wading pool and shook his wet fur all over us and the picnic table groaning with fried chicken, potato salad and corn-on-the-cob.

The vibe of this year´s Fourth is a far cry from that memory. Scrolling through facebook, I saw that few people had posted happy greetings I know the Consulate threw a big party, but not one of my many American friends told me they had a celebration planned.

Nowadays, almost everything we read about the U.S.A. focuses on President Trump. Every day he seems to say or do something unanticipated. I often check out a website called “What Trump Did Today”   https://www.whattrumpdid.today/   I can’t describe how disappointed I felt when I saw he’d replaced the traditional “down-home” remembrance of liberty with a show of military might.

Fintan O’Toole, a journalist with The Irish Times warns such actions are evidence that Trump and his supporters are building a fascist state. You can read the full article at this link:

https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/fintan-o-toole-trial-runs-for-fascism-are-in-full-flow-1.3543375?mode=amp&fbclid=IwAR0UijeVXeuKUwp4aKuuLVLOfJg-lI7JyrQN64BZs7xyUimWdXKgMGP9mts

Here are a few points, culled from the full article:

  1. Fascism doesn’t arise suddenly in an existing democracy… convincing people takes time.
  2. Getting them to accept behaviours they used to recoil from requires several different approaches.
  3. One of the basic tools of fascism is the rigging of elections
  4. Fascism does not need a majority; it typically begins to consolidate power with about 40% support and then uses control and intimidation to bring others into the fold.
  5. Fascism undermines moral boundaries by making light of cruelty
  6. Fascism builds up the sense of threat from a despised out-group which allows the members of that group to be dehumanised…

And once that happens, what comes next?

Trump’s “base” is organised and ready to rumble. I pray that the Democratic party will  not spend too long choosing their candidate … someone energetic and principaled … someone who won’t back down when bullied.

Most of the world is alarmed, and yet, we can do nothing about it. The American Democratic party and the nation’s voters are the only ones who can reverse the ever-escalating trend that the current administration has put in motion.

PLEASE get moving … there is not a moment to lose.