Saturday, October 29, 2011

!Vivan los Muertos!

Harvesting Terciopelos
Día de los Muertos is just around the corner, and Mexico is preparing to celebrate. A very colorful and busy time. I have made a small altar for Marie in my room in Hostal del Zocalo where I am now staying. I am sure she is relishing the colors and flavors laid out before her.
I have been here eleven days now and things fall into place nicely. I have rented a small, new house with two bedrooms,  kitchen, living room and small garden in San Andés Cholula, I will move in as soon as it is finished. San Andrés is a small, quiet pueblo about forty minutes outside of Puebla. I will trade English classes for cooking classes with the owner of the house, who lives right next door. Restaurante Casa Ricardo to open soon in Corvallis! Watch out Bombs Away!
Cempachutil or Flor de Muertos
 I have made some excellent contacts here to help me with my writing projects, thanks to my friend Javier in Corvallis. One is a writer and filmmaker who just finished a film on immigration, the topic of my book. I was also invited out to the pueblo de las flores, Atlixco, with a local campesino to cut and buy flowers for Day of the Dead. Tonight I am invited to a friend's daughter's quinceñera (15th birthday). The days seem to fly by and I find myself content and glad to be here. I learn new things each day.

 Peace, Freedom: Total absence of fear

The violence here is receiving lots of attention in the press. Most of it is along the border or in the state of Vera Cruz. Reports yesterday claim the government has driven the Zetas, the most violent of the cartels, out of the city of Vera Cruz into the isolated mountainous regions between the states of Vera Cruz and Puebla. Where I am is considered a safe area because many of the families of the "narcos" live in Puebla. They have not brought the violence here for that reason. In any case, the violence is very directed at cartel members, and little old men like me  do not have anything to fear!
I am including some photographs I have taken recently to give you a taste of what life is like in Puebla on a daily basis. Abrazos a todos, and thanks for reading this blog.
Sidewalk Ofrenda in Puebla

Worker's demonstration for jobs and better pay
Halloween in Puebla
Mexican bike path!
Church, San Pedro Cholula

Friday, October 14, 2011

BeBop Cholula

It has been over two years since Marie and I returned from our stay in Tlaxcala, Mexico. Since fate has sent Marie off on her own adventure, I will head off on this one alone. I am sure that Marie will be with me in spirit, as I need someone there to make sure I keep sketching! Although I am leaving alone, I will have several good friends heading south to share some of my adventures. I will have this blog, Moving On, to stay in touch for the six to eight months that I am gone. My destination this trip is Cholula, in the state of Puebla. I have a couple of projects that I want to pursue. One is a young adult novel focusing on the "Derecho de no Migrar", the right to not migrate. Marie and I had done some work on the idea while we were in Mexico, and had planned to go back and continue. Since that was not possible, I want to do so now.
I have also scanned about 150 pages from Marie's Mexico sketchbooks. She was working on a book proposal entitled, "Faces and Stories: A Sketchbook Journey in Mexico. Right before her death, I promised Marie that I would do something with her Mexico sketchbooks. I am not sure yet exactly what I will do,but I have no doubt that being back in Mexico will spark my imagination and inspire me to do just the right thing.
I will try to keep my posts relatively short and do one every two weeks or once a month, vamos a ver. Hopefully I can successfully navigate the technological rapids that I am sure I will encounter in doing this blog. Hope you enjoy the blog and please keep in touch.