Saturday, December 20, 2014

our seasoned days

I am in a seasonal cycle.

I have mentioned before that our weather is so constant here on the Pacific coast of Mexico, it sometimes feels as if we have no seasons.  Christmas is less than a week away, and we are basking in 80 degree temperatures.

The only thing that changes about the weather is that the summer is wetter, hotter, and more humid (see adjective number one) than the rest of the year.  If the winter is hot, the summer is hellishly hot. 

But that is not how we measure seasons here.  Our local villages get their biggest chunk of income from the surrounding farms.  We are an agriculture community.  I discover that daily as I battle the layers of dust that cover my life here.

That is not to say that tourism is not important.  My neighbors rely on it.  First from Mexicans and secondly from foreign visitors.

Our year is broken up into several tourist seasons.  During the summer, Mexican families descend on us.  In years past, they came almost exclusively by bus from the mountains.  During the last two years, a large portion show up in SUVs filled with beach toys and their designer-dressed children.

But that is not the only Mexican tourist season.  Throw in weekends, two weeks around Easter, two weeks around Christmas, and it is easy to see why the local businesses rely heavily on their fellow countrymen for the core of their tourist-based revenue.

The northern tourist trade is a bit more discrete.  Their season begins in November, increases in December, and then comes into full swing in January and February.  By Easter, most of the northerners have headed home.

During those months, the tenor of our little towns takes on a new tone.  Some of the better restaurants extend their serving schedules.  Special tours are offered.  And what passes for our social season begins.

There are no Hampton lawn parties or evenings at the opera with the remnant of Mrs. Vanderbilt's social list.  But we northerners do have our own way of celebrating each others' company. 

Yesterday in moving to mexico -- doing good, I told you about part of our social season this week.  The Rotary dinner dance.  A fundraiser for animal rescue.  A meeting of grumpy, old white guys lending a helping hand.  A nostalgic Christmas sing-along at the church.

Today topped off the week with an art walk.  Well, not so much a walk as an art sale.  Two of my former neighbors opened their houses to the public.  Jeanne is a photographer.  Ed, as you know, is a painter.  Each year they put on a show with some of their artistic friends in their respective gardens.

For most of us, it is an opportunity to take a good look at the creative efforts of our local artists.  And the artists have a self-selected audience to whom they can hawk their wares.

I spent most of my afternoon with Ed and Roxane.  Over the years, I have watched them upgrade their home in Villa Obregon.  It started as a basic little house.  With a bit of love and a lot of creativity, they have turned the place into an oasis for art.

After buying fifteen paintings this month, you would think that my appetite would be sated for a bit.  But I have three bedrooms that need at least one painting each.

I picked out some candidates which may or may not be included in this post.  But, as I have said several times, I am going to take my time in putting together the final touches on the house.

Whether I buy any more, spending the afternoon in the Gilliam garden was pleasure enough for me.  It was a bit like relaxing beside Monet's water lily pond -- while Monet was in attendance.  

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