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Work 4 Peace,Hold All Life Sacred,Eliminate Violence! I am on my mobile version of the door-to-door, going town-to-town holding readings/gatherings/discussions of my book "But What Can I Do?" This is my often neglected blog mostly about my travels since 9/11 as I engage in dialogue and actions. It is steaming with my opinions, insights, analyses toward that end of holding all life sacred, dismantling the empire and eliminating violence while creating the society we want ALL to thrive in

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Los Mochis, Yarida, and Pics of Truck


The first time Victoria sees me, I have just met her daughter and am in her home. It is almost dark already and Victoria struts in the door, warmly welcomes me with a hug and kiss as her daughter introduces me.

Victoria is tall, stately, slender womon with short hair, blacker than the black birds that come to eat my crumbs every morning and straighter than corn silks.

Victoria responds to my “I’m 60 years old” with “I’m 65 years old”! We are both beaming!

She dresses formally every time I see her, with an outfit that appears to be new and everything matching.

She smiles broadly and has a deep, smokers sexy voice that sends warmth vibrating to everyone within range, whether she’s speaking english or Spanish.

Yarida has proudly named her mother a hippie and I as I look at her now, I can see her swinging her long leg over the seat, grasping the handle bars of her motorcycle, donning her black leather jacket with no helmet, face determined and open, and taking off over rutted paths and rocky roads, straight long black hair streaming.

I want to ask her about that trip but I don’t have the words – yet. My truck is parked around the corner, as I’ve been out looking for veggie oil today. Victoria tells me to park out front, she wants to see it.

When I go to get it, Victoria tells me she will come! I ask Alicia if she wants to come too but she says no. Victoria and I stroll down the street to the truck, that I hastily make the front seat passenger friendly, and then Victoria hops into the truck as if she’s been doing such things all her life.

Maybe she has. When we get back to the house, Victoria remembers I have asked about water and filling up my tanks. Alicia brings out the hose, which is about ½” in diameter, and we attach my hose and let ‘er rip! It takes forever to fill the tanks but we do it!

I invite Victoria and Alicia into mi casa. Alicia refuses again but Victoria pulls herself inside. She tries to sit on the bed, but it is many inches too short for her tall frame. I give her the stool to sit on and some of my popcorn to eat. She likes it!

I invite her to get a bowl and make a note to myself to make her a fresh batch later.

Victoria knows about my quest for veggie oil. She goes off to her friend’s restaurant and gets him to agree to give me oil. Yarida, Victoria and I pile into Yarida’s car with my two containers of oil, funnel and filters and off we go around the corner.

The restaurant owner brings out a container that is maybe ¾’s full, apologizing that it is all he has. I am thrilled. Yarida and Victoria start off lifting the container and dumping it thru the funnel into the new container, while I hold the edges of the paper filter up so the oil will run thru faster.

It still takes us the next 45 minutes or so to finish the job. I think Victoria and Yarida are surprised by how much work it takes, yet they hang in there until we have transferred everything but the dregs into the clean container.

I hope this doesn’t put a damper on their quest for veggie oil used for me!

I invite Victoria to come with me on this Joiyssey and I’m not sure if her adventurous spirit longs to fly or if she’s happy being adventurous here. Either way, she doesn’t want to come.

Yarida, Victoria, Alicia - to be continued

I am so blessed that I am parked almost outside their door and Sandra has introduced me to these three amazing and interesting womyn. And that they have taken me under their collective, capable wings.

Yarida considers herself a feminist! And her mom a hippie! Can I get any luckier????

And both Yarida and her mom are studying English. They are all truly welcoming and happy to see me, as I am to see them. Every time I go to their home, I am kissed, hugged, welcomed and someone hands me a present: whether it is fruit, water, the offer of something to eat, or little tchochkes like combs and jewelry.

And not just for me, but when Victoria finds out I have a daughter and grandson, I get gifts for them too.

But the greatest gift is their kindness, their interest and support of me and my joiyssey. Today, unbidden, Victoria has gone a couple blocks away to a Chinese restaurant to ask them for their veggie oil!

Yarida takes me around Los Mochis in her car that I get into very warily. She wants to take me to the museum. Thankfully, she is a much better driver than Sandra’s friend, so we stop at stop signs, red lights, and follow the rules of the road!

I ask about the huge circular crack on the windshield towards the middle right below the visor on the passenger’s side. She points to her head and tells me her boy friend was driving… oy vey.

I grab the seat belt and notice she has put hers on as well. I can’t imagine how that must have hurt. And  now all the cracks I’ve seen in so many of the windshields around here fall into a different understanding.

The museum is closed but we go to the adjoining bookstore and I find a dvd about ancient goddesses in Mexico that is in english, Spanish, and German too. I buy it, to support the museum as well as the subject and filmmaker, and we will watch it in Spanish tonite with Victoria and Alicia.

We go to the park that Yarida calls “Botanical Gardens”. It is a huge, amazing park that apparently was the land that the early colonizer and christo-profiteer Johnson claimed for himself way back in the 1800’s.

Yarida and I speak of this man she calls the founder of this city. I ask her if there were not people already living here? I can’t imagine people not inhabiting such a lush place, close to the ocean and at the mouth of yet another river – if not permanently then seasonally.

I tell her that u.s. history is often written the same way, as if the original people, the first people were not occupying the lands that Europeans flooded onto. She nods understanding.

I ask her if this Johnson fellow did not exploit the people here? Yarida identifies proudly as indigenous and Chinese. She talks a lot about her indigenous heritage, protecting it, claiming it, cherishing it.

She seems to think of Johnson as some kind of great person who did a lot for Los Mochis. I tell her whenever any man becomes very, very, very rich off the labor of others, he is an exploiter. She agrees.

And she points out the other white man, also estadounidense, who came here and exploited the land, the people, the resources. The second exploiter ‘brought’ the railroad to Los Mochis; the first sugar cane.

And I wonder if the railroad is what brought the Chinese here, as in the states. Yarida knows little about why her grandfather came here, and I haven’t asked Victoria yet.

The park has a brand new section that Yarida hasn’t seen yet either. There is a photo display of information about the flora and fauna of the area and a huge meandering pond where many birds, ducks, and turtles reside.

Yarida tells me about her connection with the tortuga, her spirit animal, her eyes sparkle, her face glows, her voice filled with awe and excitement as she speaks of them! She tells me of the beaches where the huge tortugas come and bury their eggs, and little turtles make their way out of the sand and back to the ocean.

And she takes many pictures as they sun on branches, slip into the water, and their little heads bob up to snatch a breath of air.

We head back out to the park by her house where people from Chiapas are vending their wares. They will be here for 12 days. I will miss the largest part of the festival which will include dancing, performances, and speeches!

I console myself knowing I will be in Chiapas soon so I’ll not really miss anything.