Here's an image: We are sitting in plastic chairs, huddled around a TV inside a cinder block house/restaurant at the edge of the jungle. Roosters interrupt us in their boorish and macho way. It's hot. The door to the bathroom is a moldy plastic shower curtain. Everyone is eating bacon and eggs and drinking the world's worst coffee. Then Obama appears on screen and the room, filled with maybe 50 Americans—mostly middle aged, mostly Berkeley-esque—is silent and we watch the inauguration and some of us cry and everyone claps, especially for Aretha, giant hat and all.
Everyone, that is, except for the Mister. He's busy reading If You Take a Mouse to School out on the patio to our twins, who have chosen the exact moment of Obama's speech to get all squirmy and testy. I try to relieve him, I do. But he has martyr tendencies and maybe I don't try all that hard. Anyway, I owe him one.
On our way upriver to watch the inauguration
And, Mexico. Here's what I forgot when I was spazzing out and getting all worked up and worried about the trip: I love Mexico and I'm sorry I ever joked about cheating on it with Disneyland. I would never do that. Disneyland may have a better sewage system and a more reliable sense of time, but Mexico has soul. And mariachi music, and margaritas (which, in combination, always make me weep). They have boats painted orange and aqua. They have fishing poles made of bleach bottles, and way better Cokes, and lollipops covered in chili powder, and geckos that chatter in the night. They have kids everywhere and baby girls in frilly dresses. They have waiters who pick up your kids, and brown pelicans patrolling in formation. Parrots. Palm trees. Bananas growing in bunches of 100. Donkeys carrying sand. And they have best avocados in the world. Bar none.
Paintings on the street I did not buy
Hot dog-lime cups I also did not buy
Maggie and Ollie are so not into pants in Mexico