Monday, May 4, 2009

On Not Going Back

My fellow blog writers are dropping like flies. Two have gone back to the United States and the ones who are left have departure dates not far off. Their eyes are already focused far to the north. It’s the same for all the foreign community. There is a boiling down to just the year-round residents— those who can face being further boiled in the summer to come. We are among the ones who no longer go back.

Every year another person or couple joins the ranks of the year-round. The ties to Back There have been loosening. For several years membership on all those committees has been allowed to go into months of suspension but eventually they don’t want you any more and you don’t mind. The war will be stopped, the watershed saved, and strategies for world peace developed by others. Friends wonder how important they are to you. Events and crises have gone on fine without your participation. You can hardly bear to face the neglected northern home, the opportunity for spring planting passed. There remains the greatest draw—grandchildren, but there is a perfectly functioning international airport. If your children weren’t nearby, one airport is as good as another.

For us, time in Mexico had come to be the better part of the year and time spent here had gone from two weeks, to three months and on to six. The attachment to new friends had grown. New community interests had come along too but with a tiny fraction of the meetings. We eventually had broadband and NPR. Our new home was lovely and open and filled with soft breezes. The flowers were so easy to grow. More and more ties to Back There were either cut or stretched to reach into the tropics.

Now I admit that my husband and I will also leave San Pancho for the summer and fall. We will go two hours away to our cool mountain home in San Sebastian. Turns out we don’t want to be boiled either. Three other foreign resident San Pancho couples have adopted the same plan and perhaps more will follow. Over time, commitment to the new pueblo has grown with friendships becoming established and joint projects started. When we are on the coast we often think of the mountain town, and vice versa. We seem to have chosen the same bind, but with the not-insignificant difference of a two hour drive rather than four days or more. We can easily check in. No meetings there either, though we did recently join a protest to save an ancient tree. Here we go again.

1 comment:

Netta and Lily said...


We are a young family from Quebec, Canada, planning to spend 3 months next winter in Mexico. We would like to do some volunteer work and setle in a friendly village and are looking for contacts and an affordable place to stay with our young daughter Lily (now 14 months).
I found your blog and am enjoying reading it.