It is one thing to move and find a new address to receive mail, and another to have no address at all. My brother was incredulous when he learned we had not an address. He was against me moving to Mexico from the start—for several reasons but especially crime that he imagined and also climate change studies. Brent is my “survivalist” brother. He married a woman from Mexico about five years ago. Last we spoke, he said he would be coming down soon, “Well, how am I going to find you?” I replied that I can give him a GPS location. Actually, it will be easier to meet him at the village church, next to the mayor’s office.
There are inconveniences we face everyday here in San Pedro Ixtlahuaca, Mexico. But because of the house, and having each other, along with a few good people we can call friends, we are hopeful and happy. The house is the most comfortable I have ever lived in. It has further possibilities—and is paid for in full. Cost of living is a fraction of what we were spending in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA. We have all we need.
I can’t speak or understand Spanish. Amy does to some extent. The climate is indeed hotter . . . with only two seasons: wet and dry. We are now at the end of the dry season, and have had a couple rains. Thank God because the landscape has been brown. Now some leaves are coming out on trees that I thought to be dead.
The other surprise is insects. I have been spoiled by Santa Fe where there is hardly a fly to speak of and no mosquitos—only some garden pests, yes. But here I have killed three scorpions in the house so far. We have both been bitten by mosquitos and maybe some other critters. Oh well, I remember coming home to a rattlesnake coiled up in my front hall in Santa Fe.
Another thing is some inevitable culture shock. The main one being poverty and a sense that beautiful surroundings are not necessary. I have experienced this before in world travels. People have little to satisfy basic needs. Homes outside the center of Oaxaca are often merely pasted together sheets of tin, or unadorned cinder block houses without adornment or beauty.
There are trees blooming here now that are simply divine. Especially the jacaranda. We have two—one in front and the other out our back door. If I were to make a painting of them, I would use a color called cobalt violet light. It’s my favorite color.