January 31, 2018

From The Heart - Robe Sleeves, Privlidge, And A Week In Mexico.

I need to show you something. I wanted to sit on the balcony on a particularly brisk morning during my vacation last week, and decided to take advantage of the robe hanging in the closet. As I started to untie the belt and remove it from the hanger, I noticed that the right arm was tucked in such a way as to give it the appearance of saluting, with the hand over the heart.  I wrote the following from said balcony as a reflection of the experiences I've had in Mexico and at the Vidanta resort:
Here, every staff member you meet smiles a radiant room filling smile, and makes this same gesture. It means, "Service from the heart." Everyone, from the doorman using his radio to call for a golf cart to take you to the taxi stand, to the housekeeper going home after a very long day. Facebook, I believe each and every one of them feel that every time they lift hand to chest. And I am grateful, and humbled, and work to uncharacteristically take up less space.
My parents come year after year, and they meet their friends on the paths between buildings. I come twice, and strike up a conversation with the beach vendor and learn I purchased from him last year, or go in to town and chat with a jeweler who makes the most beautiful rings; eclectic and unusual and everything I love. By the time I left, he gave me a hug and told me to come see him again next year.
My Spanish is terrible. I open my mouth and French falls out. But I love it here, the juxtaposition of poverty and privilege makes me uncomfortable, and keeps me aware. I understand tourism. I know what it's like to be economically catcalled; "Hey pretty lady, come try my tequila. Ai, Catrina, you wanna taxi?" And I know genuine if not self serving talk between humans. I'm overjoyed to find a niche where I can talk to people, to know them, and maybe see them again on another trip.
It kills me to see the entitlement here. There's pettiness that comes with money and privilege. I know you know this. We're watching it play out on a national stage with our government.
I'm not quite sure what my point is. Maybe it's trying to better judge time and space each and every day. Maybe it's a slice of life about disparity between effort and leverage. Maybe it's a moment to remind myself, and by extension, all of us, that beauty is even in the smallest of places. I'm not sure. I just know that a simple bathrobe made me very reflective this morning, and I'm glad of it.
From the heart, indeed.

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