Wednesday, January 28, 2015

closing the circle; opening another

Some essays do not have a final ending.

Take here's looking at you, kid.  You remember the tale of my neighbor Lupe.  Last April I accompanied Lupe and her son, Alex, to Mexico City to replace her artificial eye.  During the nine days we were there, we had a lot of interesting adventures.  But the primary purpose was Lupe's eye.

When we returned to Melaque, I declared "mission accomplished."  Of course, that was only the first part of the cycle.

When we last left Lupe, I told you she would need a follow-up to determine how the eye was doing in its new home.  That meant Lupe would have to make a trip back to Mexico City.  I was fully prepared to make the trip with her.  But, as you know, I have been hither and yon the past two months.

The people who raised the money asked her if she could make the trip on her own.  And she did.  The eye was working well.

Last night we celebrated Lupe.  And the people who made it all possible.

What better way to celebrate than with a good old-fashioned northern pot luck?  I almost felt as if I had taken a nostalgic turn into the church fellowship hall.  And I mean that in the most pleasant way possible.

Memories of our youth often show up at the oddest time.  Even though I was on a bungalow balcony on the Mexican Pacific coast, I felt as if I had stepped into the fellowship hall of the Powers Open Bible Church -- where everyone was either a relative or a close friend.  Not a stranger was to be found.

Of course, I had not met everyone at Lupe's celebration.  But I knew who they were.  They were the people who saw Lupe's need and generously met it.

The hostess asked Lupe how she liked our potluck dishes.  Mexicans know their courtesy -- having polished it for centuries.  But Lupe's smile was as genuine as always.  She declared it: "Very good."  And she was correct. 

Most of what I ate probably spiked my triglycerides, but I have long ago abandoned any notion of testing just how high it has gone.  Like Lupe, I declare my triglycerides: "Very good."

I should avoid the hubris of medical ignorance.  After all, my doctor was one of the guests.  The group invited her because of her work on what I call the Indian school.  They intended to donate the money to that project.

Instead, Dra. Rosa challenged the group to find a deserving family and help them in some meaningful way.  Donating money is fine.  But getting involved with a family's life is often more meaningful.

She had a family in mind.  A single dad raising three children a block from the Indian school project.

Several of the group volunteered to accompany me to Pinal Villa to look at the property.  We have had continual flooding around Pinal Villa this year -- so bad that most fields could not be cultivated this season.  The structure where the family lives sits right in the midst of that flooding.

So, as one story ends, another may be opening.

I will keep you posted on what we discover -- and what can be done.  One family at a time.

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