Monthly Archives: February 2011

Day Three: San Miguel

The San Miguel Writers’ Conference has drawn to a close and I am very pleased with everything I saw and did here. I met a lot of other writers, heard very savy speakers and participated in wonderful workshops.

One of the very best happened to be the blogging seminar. The presenter, Bill Belew seemed to know EVERYTHING about blogging as he should… he’s a professional blogger. He explained how he manages to support his family by his blogging skills. Hard core! He helped me to see how I can use the blog more efficiently and suggested I make more frequent, shorter posts. If anyone is interested in consulting him, he does offer this service from his website, bill belew

Let me know what you think of the new approach…



Filed under Vida Latina, Writing

The Sixth Annual San Miguel Writers’ Conference

San Miguel residents, Patrice Wynne of ABRAZOS – San Miguel Designs and Beverly Nelson of Life PathReteats

Every year writers from all over Mexico, the USA, Canada, and a smattering of other further-flung spots gather together to discuss every aspect of our craft, to hear world class speakers, and to enjoy the colorful central Mexican ambiance. This is the sixth San Miguel Writers’ Conference… and I’m so glad to be here. Continue reading


Filed under Vida Latina, Writing

¡Gracias Humberto, Darío and Verónica!

It is said that everything comes in threes. Although we enjoyed Oaxaca in so many ways, we had the purse incident and witnessed the teachers’ protest.  What do you suppose the third “challenge” might have been?

On Wednesday morning, we decided it would be best to leave Oaxaca at 6 am. We wanted to be on our way, well ahead of any further protests that might occur over the course of the morning. This proved to be a wise decision because later on, 70,000 “teachers” marched through the streets, leaving 1.2 million children without classes. Continue reading


Filed under Vida Latina

Lessons Learned

The 2011 Life Long Learning tour is ending with the emphasis on learning … that’s for sure!

Lesson One: Mystery abounds…When we arrived last Saturday night, Jorge and I headed downtown… found a table at one of the delightful restaurants that ring the main plaza. Sure enough… as ALWAYS happens here, it took only a short time for our great friend Cliff Hinderman to come strolling by.  He looked pleased to see us but not surprised. He’s used to running into us in the oddest places. Without ever planning a get together, we seem to find one another. And this is indeed one of life’s wonderful mysteries. Continue reading


Filed under Vida Latina

Happy Valentine’s Day

Valentines Day is one of my favorite holidays in Mexico. It is not just for sweethearts who want to revel in their enchantment or grade school children who delight in sending secret greeting cards to one another. And yes, it is much more than a justification for eating chocolate!

February 14th is the day to celebrate friendship – of every kind.

I feel blessed to have so many friends… from my childhood up until now, an abundance of people have come into my life and have made it richer, better, sweeter…

On this year’s Life Long Learning travels we’ve been together on the bus rides…

We’ve poked through markets…

Sampled new foods…

Listened to marvelous music…                                                              

Viewed breathtaking scenery

Seen ancient architecture and monuments….

And commiserated about less-than-excellent nights in noisy hotel rooms…

All this and much more have been opportunities to share friendship.

This morning, as I write down my thoughts, a long, long gallery of faces is parading through my memory. Most are not here in Oaxaca to enjoy Valentines Day with me but in Mexico we say, “Recordar es volver a vivir…” – “Remembering is like re-living…”

Yes, Valentines Day is special to me, but really… every day of the year is an opportunity to reach out to those who cross our path and invite them into our world.

Sharing with others and building friendships turns mundane events into adventures. Friendship enriches and transforms our ordinary lives into extraordinary ones.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all!


Filed under Destinations

Final Photos of Mexico City

Here are the final photos of magnificent Mexico City… Tomorrow I’ll tell you all about pretty, pretty Puebla.

Our group felt extremely lucky… After more than a year of reno work, the Bellas Artes Theater had its first presentation of Amalia Hernandez’ ” Balet Folklorico” and we were on hand to see it. The enthusiasm of the dancers was incredible…

What visit to Mexico City is complete without a day at Chapultepec? This is the park’s logo… that’s right it’s a grasshopper…

This gigantic “Tlaloc” the Aztec rain god stands guard over the entrance to the park’s Museum of Anthropology. In 1964, it took four semis to carry monolyth into the city from the small village where it had been unearthed. And although it was in the middle of the dry season, a downour accompanied the move… It is assumed that the rain god was not amused at being relocated!

Jorge says hello to an old friend… this Chac Mool is from Chichen Itza

Ah if it were only true!

Yes, we did see the mariachis in Guadalajara but who could resist a trip to Garibaldi and this fine fellow?

Although it was pretty late for these two, they sure were enthusiastic dancers!

All of us enjoyed the mariachis but…

Jorge and Sergio enjoyed them most!




Filed under Vida Latina

Mexico City, a city of such contrast

Over the past few weeks, it has been so frustrating trying to get my photos to line up with the text and look the way I want them to… So today I’ll put in the photos in larger format and write below them… Your part will involve a lot of scrolling down. I hope you don’t get too tired!

For me, Mexico City is “the city of cities.” Here, you have the best art, culture, music, food, ambiance and everything else that 25,000,000 people can produce… Unfortunately, the contrasting “down and out” is also on prominent display. This shot is of the Cathedral in the “zocalo”, the heart of the downtown area.

Alongside the splendid architecture, I took this photo of a slice of daily life, so very different to my own. This fellow (with his girlfriend looking on) is getting a tattoo of her name emblazoned across his chest… I sure hope they NEVER break up!

Next we took the metro to another kind of plaza… A couple of the group members took full advantage of the crowded conditions on board!

When in the capital city, I always feel compelled to make a “pilgrimage” to the “Plaza of Three Cultures” in Tlatelolco. This is an urban housing area where more than 250,000 people live in multi-floored brick buildings. It was the site of the infamous student tragedy of October 2, 1968. Again in 1985, during the 8.1 earthquake, Tlatelolco was the scene of terrible hardship. It is difficult to believe that one place has been the setting for such drama.

Jorge and I ended our day on a lighter note… with a ride on this splendid carrousel!

Recently, in Merida… a friend asked when Jorge had last been on a horse. He said he couldn’t remember. And unlike me, today, he missed up another opportunity!

Close by the merry-go-round, is the monument to the solidarity of Mexico City’s population during the 1985 earthquake. Like I said at the start of this post, the lightest moments and the saddest memories of Mexico’s history are on display in this striking city.

Tomorrow, our group will head off to Puebla and Oaxaca… So definitely, more posts about this year’s Life Long Learning adventure will follow… as soon as I have another few spare moments to sit down at the computer…













Filed under Vida Latina