Thursday, January 01, 2009

it is always then; it is never now

1 January. New calendar.

There is something about tossing out an old calendar. It is more than mere symbolism. It is a kinetic act showing that time really has passed -- and it will never be here again.

That is the philosophical side of time. But time passing can have relational aspects, as well.

One of the first blogs I discovered in my quest to determine if Mexico should be my next home was "Eddie Willer's"
Adventures Of A Third World Shopkeeper. Most blogs about Mexico are uniformly upbeat and sunny -- describing Mexico in the same glowing terms that a friend describes his spinster sister. You know there must be something else going on, but the family simply does not talk about it.

"Eddie" talked about it. He left Britain because its political system was sapping his individual creativity. He turned that same jeweler's eye of libertarianism on Mexico.

I did not always agree with his observations, but they were always interesting. Case in point: Privatization of buses in his hometown of Tampico resulted in scheduling chaos. Even as the champion of the free market, he suggested that regulation may be better than the ensuing anarchy.

His blog announced: "Eddie now lives as a peaceable merchant with his wife and baby daughter. After all, life as a third-world shopkeeper has to be better than as a first-world wage slave."

Unfortunately, for those of us who were his fans, "Eddie" decided that being a third-world shopkeeper was not the uplifting opportunity it originally promised. He has posted his last post, and will be moving to Canada with his family at the end of January.

I, for one, will miss his pithy observations -- all based on a slightly eccentric view of human kind.

The fact that "Eddie Willers" now chooses an alternate course is not a surprise. At the end of Atlas Shrugged, Eddie's fate is not disclosed -- he is merely stranded in the desert. But, there is hope. From the pen of Herself, we learn: "He is much too able and too honest ever to adjust himself to collectivism."

If his chosen pseudonym even has an iota of accuracy, Canada will prove to be an adventure, but not the ultimate home for our "Eddie."

As he heads north, and I head south, I wish each of you a very happy and blessed new year.


1st Mate said...

In my view, Mexico is too large and diverse a country to be comprehended or judged by living in one particular area. There are national laws and regulations, and there are obstacles for any gringo wishing to do business here. It's a balancing act, but also depends on where you're trying to do the balancing. Anyway, I hope our shopkeeper will be happy in Canada -- at least the climate will be more like what he's used to.

Bob Mrotek said...

I am not too worried about "Eddie". I am pretty sure that he will be back. Considering the weather they are having in Toronto right now I am willing to bet that he is wishing that they were back already. I went back to Chicago in the winter a few years ago just to visit. When I got back to Mexico and got off the plane I knelt down and kissed the ground just like the Pope :)

Brenda said...

Happy New Year to you also. May the upcoming year be good to you.

Steve Cotton said...

1st Mate -- I was one of his readers who tried to persuade "Eddie" to try another area of Mexico before heading to Canada. But I know what it is like to have the desire to simply move on.

Bob -- I was thnking the same thing as I walked Jiggs through the park at midnight last night. We are experiencing our winter drizzle rains right now. I can take that. But a Toronto winter? I could put up with a lot in Mexico to avoid that.

Brenda -- Thanks. I trust it will be a blessed year for all of us.

Calypso said...

Hard to say what Adrian ("Eddie" - he is using his name on his current Canuck Bog) will do - his up and moving to Canada came as a shock to me.

He is a good guy and very bright - he will figure it out. Actually he still is quite young (relative to most of us 55 + ers)

Happy New Year Steve.

Steve Cotton said...

Calypso -- Michael actually called this one a couple of months ago. I guess we should have all seen the warning signs. What surprised me was the choice to move to highly-regulated Canada. Hardly what I would think of as a libertarian haven for our pal.