News, Visits and Thoughts

my mobile library

Yesterday, I had a meeting with the Libros Para Pueblos people to discuss my funding of a mobile
library that will visit the 20 noviembre market. The vendors and their children will benefit from access to library books during the week days when the market is quiet.

I'm still reading A Gentleman in Moscow and I find that I can empathize with Count Rostov's
loss of those comforts of his earlier life. My wifi is quivery and definitely will not support Netflix. Posting a blog may take several sessions if I want to include photos or links.
I don't have a water cooler in the apartment so I am required to go with a glass to the lobby or to purchase a small bottle of water each day. It is early morning and I want to brush my teeth. No water, no kettle, no coffee. Until I go out...These are inconveniences, not hardship! What if I had to fetch water further than the lobby?


I encountered a bloqueo yesterday. The health care workers' union was protesting job losses. They rent busses and they block traffic for hours. Since streets are one lane and one way, you can imagine 
the chaos! But can you imagine the loss of a job in Mexico's second poorest state?

There are changes occurring in el Centro of Oaxaca, a UNESCO heritage site dating from 500 years
of colonialism. It's important to remember that these are unceded lands that were inhabited and developed long before the arrival of the Spanish. The day before yesterday, a Japanese store opened on the Andador Turistico (pedestrian street)where  all of the other shops are Oaxaqueño. Big box stores and American stores are outside of Centro.

Loss and change are important themes in "A Gentleman". The Count observes that political turmoil and industrial progress can accelerate change. I looked in the new store and if I were a young Oaxaqueño, I would find the attractive, inexpensive gadgets hard to resist. After all, other than visitors, who needs another embroidered blouse?


  1. Interesting parallels between the book you are reading and where you are staying just now. Change is constant.

    1. It is important to keep perspective especially when one travels to areas that are not
      as economically advantaged as home. The Count finds ways of meeting his needs without leaving the building.


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