Wednesday, April 26, 2017

There Was a Time

Your hair was long, pants baggy, and wallet almost empty. You carried a backpack as you walked the narrow streets in Cuernavaca looking for a cheap hostel. You had no health insurance, no safety net, no cell phone, and no one who knew you before had any idea where you were. Mother included. You liked it that way. You had come for some answers, mainly to the question of whether or not life was worth living, arrogant young man that you were. There, off in the distance, framed by the colonial buildings that lined the streets, was the big volcano. You liked that too, seeing a volcano down the street on which you would live for the next several months. You would learn to live on the money you could make teaching English, learn to shop in the market for black beans, fresh corn tortillas, jitomates. You would read B. Traven and travel on chicken buses to Oaxaca. You would smuggle a Mexican friend across the border and then travel and work together back in the Estados. But all of that would come later, after you figured out what you came to figure out. You had to learn how to care for someone else, even if that took you out of where you thought you might be going.

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