Saturday, 7 May 2011

Continuing Tug of War

This public announcement is appearing, well-printed on large canvas sheets with brass rivets, hanging off of bridges and other structures in areas of high pedestrian and/or vehicular traffic in the two States of the Republic mentioned below.   First in Spanish and  then below, I have rendered an humble attempt to translate the matter into the English language.

"Los ciudadanos sabemos quiénes son Los Zetas. No se molesten en colocar mantas justificando sus acciones cobardes, en las que quieren hacer creer que sus emociones son diferentes. Los ciudadanos sabemos quiénes son los del CDG y quiénes son Los Zetas. Nos queda claro que si Los Zetas matan a sus propios amigos, que esperamos nosotros como ciudadanos de Nuevo León y Tamaulipas. No se molesten Lazcano y Z 40 en justificar sus acciones. Atte. Ciudadanos Unidos"

"The citizens, we know whoso are the Zetas.    Do not bother yourselves by hanging (placing) announcement banners justifiying your cowardly actions, in which you wish to make us believe that your emotions (reasonings) are different from what they are.   The citizens, we know whoso are the Cartel del Golfo and whoso are The Zetas.     It remains clear to us that if The Zetas kill their own friends, then what do we hope for as plain citizens of Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas States?    Do not bother yourselves Lazcano (leader in the Cartel del Golfo) y Z 40  (fortieth leader of the Zeta Cartel)  to justify your actions.
United Citizens

      These are the new "hangings" being placed in public view throughout the two adjacent States above named.   It would seem that the increased effectiveness of the military and the stiffening of resolve by the common man is beginning to solder a steel force.   These are a bit larger than small steps that are helping to move us on to a brighter day.   Very encouraging.
          The Old Gringo has been surprized during  the past few days to actually see "the other side of the story" about the actual situation in Mexico.   Even in some cases a couple of transmissions have been a bit too "Pollyanna", quite frankly.   The thing is that some dumboe reporter (I know, it's redundant all over again) will go to some place in the Yucatan or in Guanajuato or in the Baja or in various of  many places in the vast majority of the square mileage of what is the Republic of Mexico and say something like "So there you have it, Marguarita Onnice and her live-in Boyfriend SpungeBill Beerblotter have lived here in San Miquel de Allende for fifteen years and aren't leaving.   There is no crime here and every day is mid-Spring and the Corona half/liters cost the equivalent of 19 American cents." 
       Once again all of that is pretty much true, but the beer costs 31 cents, especially with the weaker dollar, there is a bit of crime here and there....but nothing serious in terms of amount or severity, especially against Gringos....every day might or might not have a monster thunderstorm with hail and lightning knocking out the electrical service for 12 hours (increasingly rare) short, no place is a perfect facsimile of Heaven.   Many places are truly almost idyllic....if one prepares himself, has a little money, expects little, appreciates the incredible Mexican civilities, and likes lots of different kinds of good food & libation, different people coming and going,  good food & libations, and has a decent place to hide when he really does not wish to be bothered.   I forgot to mention the good food and libations.
       It helps to have SKY-TV.....even the basic-plus is excellent for the price.   A list of things to make it so you really do not want to leave would be something like the following:

A good auto mechanic  (best if his neighbours, compadres, brothers-in-law, and close friends are auto repair specialists in air-conditioning, suspension, tune-up, window replacement, etc. etc. etc.)(relatively abundant)
A good tire repairman (abundant)
           A good small appliance repairman(abundant)
           A good large appliance repairman(abundant)
           An exceptionally good mayordomo (somewhat rare)
           An exceptionally good ama de llaves (chambermaid/cook)(common)
            Excellent to tolerable neighbours (common)
           A really decent bar with no drunks, with a good sports/news tele (common)
      A good old-fashioned assortment of chaotic Mexican bazaar-type markets for kitchen and meal preparation notions (abundant)
A really nice Gringo-style grocery store, like Soriana, HEB, Gran-D (common)
A confidable shrimp, oyster, & seafood purveyor (common)
Two each of an excellent 2nd class diner, a 1st class restaurant, and a couple of high-end  hootsy-tootsy deluxe places, for every now and then (abundant)
For the veterans, two or three of the sidewalk taco stands once they are recommended by friends or reliable locals.   Stunning quality food, cheap.   Many are very clean and everything is done in front of the client.
     All of these thoughts come from various recent and and even long-past  meetings and encounters with Gringos/as who live in Mexico on a full-time or significant part-time basis.     I have been searching for quite a while for  the common denominator that would explain our nuttiness.   All of the above are mentioned, almost always.   Each Gringo/a has to provide the theatre's stage.....beach area, mountains, archaeological site abundance, historical imperatives, art centers, sixteen bars adjacent to one another requirement.... or whatever else.    It might surprize even Fox News people, that the most common Mexophile tends to vote Republican.....about 60 - 40.

This will finish it for to-day, probably.   More will effuse should there be an earthquake or if a flying saucer crashes nearby, otherwise, you all are safe from me for a while.  
Thank you for your attention, as always.
El Gringo Viejo,
Director de Operaciones