Tag Archives: making change


Peek-a-boo, I hear you

Peek-a-boo, I hear you
This guy is presumably blind. But how did he know to frame himself up like that? And when I pulled out the camera, why did he stop to tune up?

I’ve given him money in the past.


Travel companion


Above: William, strugging for the right proportion of mezcal to Fresca.

Just came back from another overnight, this time to a town in the guidebook section on “Mixteca Alta.”  We had unexpected happiness in Teposcolula.  Sweet little town, though hard to find coffee.

We found out that William will blow a blood vessel in his brain if he goes to any more “mercados,” but later said, “It’s hard for me to admit, but I really do need you in my life.”  There.  The beginning and the end. I’ve spared you the middle 24 hours.

Looking ok, if not good

If my hair looks funny today, it might be because I had my hair cut last night by the guy around the corner, Jose, I think.  Not much language in common, but I never feel as if I communicate clearly with my hair cutters anyway.

William had gone there last week and he looks ok, and I thought it iconoclastic that he has a motorcycle parked inside his storefront shop.  He said that kids don’t cry during a haircut when they’re sitting on a motorcycle.  Sweet.  He also charges unisex prices.  I boycott places that don’t.

I didn’t let him cut too much, but we agreed that I could come back today to cut a little more “si necesario.”  He did say with a smile, “si, cortar, no pegar,”  I can cut, but I can’t stick it back on.

That’s what all hairdressers say.

Readers, digesting

William at OLL -- 3 oct 2013

William at OLL — 3 oct 2013

The Sacks book is not the only book I’ve read in a month, though it is a treasure, especially here and now.  My reading pace has been good, but I am jealous of William’s. He can read really fast and can stay up all night to finish a book.  He loads up at the library, and has probably read at least 12 books, fiction and non, about Mexico, the Civil War, Dien Bien Phu and more.  (Without irony, he thought Mexico Profundo was “deep.”) He says he’s read three paperback novels – by Stephen King, by Tammy Hoag, and one called Wicked Delights of the Bridal Bed.  That last one slipped past me.  “Actually a good story,” he said.

Those of you know William will want to be seated when I tell you he accepted an invitation to give a little talk at the library introducing some of the volumes from the ‘new books’ shelf.  He was told he need only read the cover blurbs and maybe get a few tidbits off the web, but he read the books; he looked stuff up to accessorize.

I stayed in the next room, but as the participants left the session after more than an hour, I heard how good and lively it was.  This may be a new side to him.  Who’s not surprised?


One I picked up is a British detective story – I’d never heard of it but maybe it’s well-known – Sudden Vengeance by Edmund Crispin.  I don’t know that I’d recommend it, but I can’t remember a fiction book with so many words I had never seen before.  See if you know these:

cheroot – n. a cigar having open, untapered ends.

affray – n. a public fight; a noisy quarrel; brawl.

eupeptic – adj. having good digestion

resipiscence – n. acknowledgment that one has been mistaken

adumbrate – v. to outline; give a faint indication of; forshadow; to overshadow; obscure

rheumy – adj. damp and unhealthy

sequacious – adj. archaic. imitating, or serving another person, especially unreasoningly

I especially love these.

Re infecta – n. the business being unfinished.

Vade mecum – n. something a person carries about for frequent or regular use, literally, “go with me.”

I think I see the problem here. End the military.

Are you, as I am, seeing another military, mental health-failing, gun-toting connection? Is there something about going to war that teaches one that killing is ok? Just wondering.

And when I read the stories of the heroic efforts of surgeons and the advances in prosthetic limb engineering, I want to ask whether no one is screaming about the known cause of the head traumas and limbless young adults.

Right-wing fabulists try to suppress women’s equality, various styles of sex, and inexplicably, the availability of abortion as the sources of all of society’s evil.  But they have not considered zeroing out the military — and its rigorous on-site training programs in foreign countries — to eliminate mass shootings and the quieter, though more frequent, singletons and suicides, and the devastating, expensive life-long mental and physical injury of war.

End the military.

On my own

Life change: quitting my job.  But this time, it’s called ‘retirement.’  I hit the 10-year mark at my quasi-governmental organization, and sought the door.  So now, will William as support and amusement, I am on an interstitial stay in Oaxaca.

New job, new life. (You first, then me.)

Wow. I’m SO wishing you all the best at the job. And I go beyond that – imagining a whole new lifestyle with minimal driving, walking to work, enjoying the town you actually live in, having extra hours of personal time.

In my mind, I’ve go you making a pot of coffee when you wake up, reading the paper in your underwear, creating a little almond-butter-and-cucumber sandwich on whole wheat bread/piece of fruit lunch, then walking less than a mile to work, instead of driving for a precious hour.

Oh, the money you’ll save.

After work, I have you slipping a couple of work documents and some pleasure reading into your bag, walking to the nearest café on the way home, nursing one (1) glass of wine while you read your stuff, then walking on home for a healthy dinner.

Oh, the mental health you’ll feel.

And I’m waiting for world peace to break out too. William says I have an active imagination. Yes, I do. But wishing can make things happen. And I’ve just described the lifestyle I want to have. I admit to two (2) glasses of wine.

Send word about how it all goes.