Friday, June 08, 2007

Just round the bend...

Now you know that in big cities the world over weird and wonderful things are apt to happen at a moments notice. Whether you are ready for it or not. Well the strangest thing that I have seen in a big city happened last weekend.

We had headed into the big smoke- locally known as Mexico City- to pick up some books for the school. It started out as a jolly jaunt. We supped at an Italian establishment that strayed somewhat from your traditional fare; I for example had fish with a goats cheese sauce nestled on a bed of mushrooms. The sauce was both plentiful and delish, the mushrooms a good partner but, I could not for the life of me taste the fish. It was there under the smothering weight of the sauce, but when you tried to taste the fish all you got was goat's cheese. The sauce/mushroom combination would have been absolutely divine with a (thick) cut of red meat, on the fish however, it was completely wasted. Sigh.

After the exotic meal we picked up the books, which also included a bit of drama. Drama and Wineera seem to go hand in hand at times. The credit card machine was down so the boss tried to pay with a cheque. The bookstore didn't want to accept a cheque for that much money. Arguments ensued, the manager was called, identification was required, assurance that the school was real was demanded, and finally the books were handed over. One of the lads who worked there carting them out to the car for us. Splendid! But I mean seriously, I may be naive but surely when someone buys eighty books and shows their ID and business card along with their cheque, you don't really need to worry that its all going to go to pot do you?

Anyway, bellies full and books tucked away in the boot, we headed out of the bustling metropolis. On one of the main roads out of town (Paseo Reforma), near a major intersection, we spotted a few lads with their shirts off and in what appeared to be their daks (undies, jocks, underwear etc). Somewhat strange but it was a hot day so it didn't really warrant a second thought. Then what do you know, we rock up to a bunch of traffic lights and there are chaps (and lassies) sans vetments (without clothes) but the men did have some modesty- they had strapped a photo of a senator infront of their "bits". They were protesting against the confiscation of their lands by the senate. Quite a unique way to go about it I thought, and there were a few of them aswell, the chaps ranging in age from teenager to grandfather, and the ladies from mother's of youngsters to grandmothers. It was quite something to see a well fed lady my mum's age in all her glory going from car to car to get donations let me tell ya. The chaps would wander in front of the cars when the light was red with their banners and drums, singing for all the world to hear, like parading naked was an everyday occurence. Perhaps it was.
I don't know the details of this dispute, I just know they were an indigenous group protesting something they felt was unjust, in a literally jaw dropping way.

Good on them. I hope it works out.

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