Wednesday, March 4, 2009


I met Sally at Paty’s after her yoga class. After breakfast we walked the mile-or-so length of Playa La Ropa while the sun was still warming up for another day of cooking. We decided that this (the morning walk on the beach) wouldn’t be a bad thing to make a habit.
We stopped to chat briefly with a character we’ve seen every morning in front of Elvira’s. We call him the Walrus. He’s a very, shall we say, robust man who’s toasted himself to a shade of brown that’s hard to find the right words for. The whole time he’s walking or sitting in his partly submersed lawn chair, he’s tuned in to his iPod. He holds court over some imaginary audience with graceful gestures ranging from little fist pumps to arms spread in praise, to moves that would go well with a “C’mon in y’all!” With eccentric people, it’s often a fine line between self-consciousness and joy. With the Walrus, it’s joy.
We spent the afternoon again walking into town, camping out at one of Jesus Christo’s tables at Tata’s, and making another feeble attempt at fishing. Today, not even a lousy jellyfish. We had some beautiful shrimp soup—disarming for the whole shrimp staring up with those bulging black eyes—an order of ceviche and some wonderful cheesy nachos. Jesus, coming to know us and tolerate our full-afternoon stays at his table, is engaging us more in conversation (often in Spanish). Today, as we compared notes about fishing, he—somewhat surprisingly—asked me, if I charter another fishing boat, to bring him a piece of whatever I catch so he can feed his family more than the occasional animal protein he’s able to afford. I found this a bit surprising coming from a Mexican male, so often keeping such things to themselves. But we were both touched by it.
Tonight we headed into town for a movie. The Zihua Cine is, to a norteamericano, a throwback to a different time. In the middle of town a couple of blocks off of the zocalo, it’s got three screens, if you can call the one we entered (with exactly 23 seats) a screen. And the screen? A big white rectangle was painted on the thin stucco wall separating our theater from the next, from which we could easily hear the sound of what was obviously some kind of intergallactic war movie. Getting our snacks was a bit like walking into someone’s kitchen. Sally ordered the ramen noodle soup which the gals prepared with great care in a microwave. My popcorn was a bag of Act I Extra Mantequilla, also microwaved to order for me.
We barely enjoyed Jim Carrey in Si, Señor, a very poor translation of Yes Man. It was in English with Spanish subtitles which softened the edge of a number of pretty raunchy scenes and foul language.
After the movie, we were in the mood for something to eat, so we bought una hamburguesa and french fries from a street vendor and enjoy them on a bench while listening to some nice variations on Miles Davis’s Kind of Blue wafting out from one of the live music bars.

1 comment:

clutter buster said...

Your "walrus" is my friend, Jim!!! the locales refer to him as "oso" - bear, in espanol.