Saturday, December 27, 2014

let my people know

Felipe, over at The Unseen Moon, treated us to a further peek into who he is by telling us about his people.

I was about to sit down to fill in that side of my life for all of you, when who should show up at my door but one of my own people: my cousin, Dan.  In the flesh.  Well, in his truck from Florida, accompanied by his wife, Patty.

Before they even entered the portal of my new house, he handed me a packet of photographs of -- my people.  At least, the people on my mother's side of the family.

I do not see a date on this particular photograph, but our youngest cousin, Robin, is perched on the arm of our grandmother's sofa -- looking a bit like Bernadette Peters or a kewpie doll, but that is redundant.  My guess would be 1955.

And there we all are -- with the exception of Dan's mother, my aunt, Berneice, who is playing Diane Arbus on our side of the camera.  You have probably already spotted me over there on the moderate right in the front row.  The giggly kid with an early book that would join a multitude of others in front of his face.

The giggles appear to be occasioned by my cousin Dan, over on the left, who is undoubtedly breaking up over something he has just pulled on his older sister Marsha sitting next to him.

I may get around to sharing some tales of this rather interesting lot.  But not today.

Today I will simply tell you how the three of us have been hitting it off.  Because Dan was one year older than I am, he was my boy guide during my youth.  He had always done whatever it was a year before I was to do it.  There was good reason why he developed that smile that would cover a multitude of sins.

I have seen Dan only infrequently over the years, and I have never had an opportunity to spend much time with Patty.  We decided to jump into the deep end of the social pool to catch up on lost time.  Literally. 

We shared Christmas dinner with the Moodies.  I know that Wynn loves snorkeling.  So, I suggested we don our fins and masks to search out the elusive reef fish of Cuastecomates yesterday.

Dan, Patty, and Wynn had a great time snorkeling while Steve sat on the beach doing his Achilles-in-his-tent impression due to a leaky face mask.  But what is there to complain about while sitting on a beach in Mexico on a beautiful winter day?  I am certain many a northerner stuck in snow would have gladly traded places with me.

I have even enjoyed showing my relatives the joy and variety of our local restaurants.  Breakfast at Lety's in Jalusco.  Lunch at Rooster's in San Patricio.  And dinner at Bésame Mucho in Barra de Navidad.

Today we will get serous about deciding when our road trip will begin.  What I have neglected to tell you -- until now -- is that Patty was born Colombian.  It will be great to have someone fully conversant in Spanish as we head off to parts of the country where English is as superfluous as knowing whether the fish knife is set to the left or right of the dinner knife.  (My people would be quite unaware of the answer to that question.)

But there are still plenty of places I want them to see before we trade our shorts for sweaters and long pants.  Maybe I can even convince them that Mexico is a great place to retire.

It certainly has worked for me.

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