This has been my longest time away from home in twelve years of living in Mexico. I’ve spent the last ten months in California, helping my daughter with childcare while she gets a home renovation business off the ground. It’s nice to be needed, and I’ve grown that much closer to granddaughters Lily, almost 10, and Anna, 8. But still, I miss my life, my friends, and my house in San Pancho.
People ask all the time, “What exactly do you DO in San Pancho?” and the short answer is “Not much.” So what is it that I miss?
That answer, “not much,” holds the key, I think. Life slows to a crawl there, and you adapt to a pace that keeps you calm. You go to bed early and sleep in late. Every other day you knock off a few items on a to-do list of relative inconsequentials, mostly involving a hardware store. You take time for long leisurely chats with friends you meet on the street. You resign yourself to phone and internet and satellite TV outages that can go on for days (plus come to realize that your being incommunicado has not made much of a difference to anyone but you). You make a big deal out of small events, milking them for every drop of enjoyment. In my case, that means cooking elaborate meals for friends and treating myself to hours of quiet prep time in my beautiful kitchen.
I look forward to re-adapting in April, when I’ll spend the month at home at Quinta Elena. I will sit on my porch, drinking cup after cup of café moka, listening to the palm fronds swishing in the Pacific breeze, taking in the solitary hawks and the flocks of wild parakeets that swoop across my field of vision as I stare out to sea. Doing nothing---it will be an excellent use of my time.