If you’re tired of mawkish depictions of a quaint and charming Mérida, it will be refreshing to know that today, a new article paints the city as a homely, pissant backwater whose faded beauty has been salvaged by a “clutch of creative insiders.”
I know, I know, be patient. Well, with this time on my hands, maybe it’s time to reflect.
I’m not going to get into any political discourse here. I’ll get in way over my head way too quickly, and I have my own home country to worry about without starting to hold forth about Mexico’s. But I’ll say this…
Walking from my house to the main square, every corner for blocks and blocks had “PRI Rata” scrawled on the walls. Was the occupant of the house a PRI supporter in a PAN stronghold, branded for all to see? Since we arrived on Election Day, I’m not sure if this was painted before or after the results were posted.
People spray all kinds of rude accusations and crude drawings on walls. Or just some American-style tagging. Here, however, a persistent partisan has been at work. Usually the political graffiti is in favor of the vandal’s own party, not against his or her opponent’s. Of course, there are exceptions. In the week I was there, no one bothered to clean up the graffiti.
Maybe it’s all harmless enough. But it’s not all “sweet innocence” in Mérida, and it’s not a paradise here. Politics is serious business here, just as it is everywhere else. For the sake of my facade, and my visa status, I’m steering clear of anything political.
I was on a brief high the other day when I booked our next flight to Mérida. But every high has to crash, and that’s what’s happened to me. Now, I have to wait for the trip.
So to kill time, I watch my RSS feed for more blog posts out of expatville and feel sad that a lot of the old reliables aren’t posting so much these days. It’s sad, but not surprising.
Most blogs last under three years or so before running their course. Maybe that’s the case with some of the Mérida bloggers. They’ve run out of things to say. Or more likely, they’re just feeling [Read more…]
The newspaper says that the local obstacle course known as sidewalks will be improved in the historic center to make them safer for senior citizens. I think junior citizens like me will benefit as well.
We can’t do much about the sidewalks being narrow, but we can move poles and wires to make them safer. Why am I concerned about this? Because guess who’s coming to visit.
My Mom, at 82 and a little unsure on her feet, is insisting on coming down to see Casa Nana when it’s finished. She hasn’t been on a plane since she took me to Disney World in 1974, and that’s only the beginning of my worry. She falls down very easily. This would scare me if she were traveling to Palm Springs or Boca Raton. But she’s coming to Mérida. I don’t know how she’s going to survive the white-knuckle cab ride from the airport, but she probably will, and then she’ll want to walk. She’ll look up and ask a question about some charming hand-painted sign, and before she can say “cocina económica,” down she’ll go. Oy.
The newspaper said that in 2011, most pedestrian accidents (that went reported) happened when people were forced off the sidewalk and into the the street, and into the path of a bus. This has happened to me often, up until [Read more…]
Paul is on the building committee of a municipal board, and he will be expected to intelligently discuss all 15 pounds of spiral-bound puffery and fairy dust. The city’s Request for Proposal called for a 20-year master plan, and some big-name architects are lining up for a piece of the action.
I paged through them in about 20 minutes. The proposals were the same-ish, kind of impressive, kind of vague — and in the end it I got the impression that I could read through them completely and still not be able to make a firm judgement. Everyone had solid credentials and a good portfolio, with work we were familiar with. Two of the firms are home-town favorites, however, and the outsiders from Boston or Philadelphia will have to overcome that. Can the committee overcome any bias?
It all reminded me of our painful, painful Mérida architect search in January. We flew down with a definite bias, [Read more…]