Estimados Amigos, esteemed friends, Feliz Año Nuevo!
I am spending New Years Eve happy as a clam at high tide in my pequeña apartment at Casa de los Abuelos. Very Mexican and cheery. From my upstairs bedroom I can see the soaring twin domes of Templo de Santo Domingo. Feeling human again after three days of being muy enferma con la grippa, flu, and lucky to have kicked back with it at Casa Colonial. Sweet memories of our First Congregational Church Berkeley stay in 2003.The agave plant at the Casa is enormous; Jane says it's Thorny's spirit -- it's grown by leaps since his untimely death a few years ago.
Yesterday, cabin fever threatening to drive me poco loco, I went with one of the Casa’s guests from Cambridge, Mass, to the ruins at Monte Alban, what an amazing, always fascinating place. Lois wore a pair of sunglasses so unique, the frames like leopard spots, exactly like a pair I once owned. She got them, she said, at a flea market in Boston. Could I have sold them at my leaving-Brookline garage sale in 1983? Could they have passed through many hands and ended up on Lois’ face? Is this the 7 degrees of separation?
Very few Americans in Oaxaca, a sign that recession still has us in its throes, sad. Now that I am regaining health, I am in love again with this place. The wind carries dust and diesel fumes along with the rich smells of elote, grilled corn on the cob and moist corn tortillas. Everything washed smells like bleach and borax.
The taxi driver who drove me and my things 12 blocks across town today crossed himself at every church we passed ─ many! Perhaps praying for a good new year. May his prayers and mine extend to you for peace, love, and happiness in the new year.