12 January 2007

stuff and nonesense

We've finished the house to our financial budget (for now) and we're finally starting to get comfortable. We lack curtains and we keep catching one of the neighbor's with her face to our living room window, peering in. It's disconcerting.

Yesterday we went to the center, finally. Although we didn't quite make it to the Zocalo (my favortite place in all of DF). The Palace of Fine Arts is so beautiful and the people walking by it so colorful. It's made completely of granite inside and outside of soft stone. It reminds me a lot of the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco. Speaking of, we went to the Barrio Chino yesterday also. This half a block of Chinese shops and restaurants is non-existant in comparison to SF, but it's also very cheap. The people there don't look chinese, but if you talk to some of them, you diffinately hear a slight accent. They replace r's with l's....something like "si te gusta esta lampala, te la doy pol cinquenta pesos" instead of "si te gusta esta lampara, te la doy por cinquenta pesos". Tonio's (you'll notice I'm spelling his name differently now that I'm back on my computer and I don't have easy access to the symbols) brother bought us a lamp and a wind chime, both of which we hung in the kitchen; making it an official oriental kitchen.

On the way back to the subway, we crossed a camp that was located just outside the Zocalo and in front of Mining Palace and another very turistic musuem....right in front of the very famous statue of the caballito (little horse). The camp was a protset on the part of the APPO (Asamblea Popular de los Pueblos de Oaxaca -- Popular Assembly of the People of Oaxaca), these are the people who have been protesting for the rights of teachers in Oaxaca. I walked right through the camp as if I owed the place (no one was around) and Tonio told me that these people are very protective and that if I want to interview them (which is completely my intention) that I need to bring them gifts and very humbly explain what I'm doing. I'm sure they'd want to talk to me....tell their story at least.

There hasn't been much talk about those protests around here, other than they have died down plenty in the last month. There isn't much talk either about Calderon or Lopez Obrador. As far as the Mexican people are concerned, after AMLO (Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador) declared himself president, he lost all respect and the majority of his following. No one wants another revolution, although it didn't seem that way during the election process.

We're running low on funds now and we're trying to live off of 20 pesos (roughly 2 USD) each daily. It's been working out well although we aren't eating much unless Tonio's parents "invite". Consequently and welcomly, we are losing weight, contrary to what I expected.

All in all, things are going well. We don't have TV so I've been reading A LOT...right now, as part of my research, I'm reading about the "making" of Mexico and the political, cultural and conquered past. There are so many things that make sense, and so many things that the Mexican culture has lost but could have definately prospered from. I'm excited to finally start working on figuring out their style of protest, where it came from, why it is the way it is, how it's changed etc.

side note: we've been having fun when we buy stuff for the house because we've come to learn that the people in the Markets are willing to lower the price to newly weds. So, we've been telling everyone that we just got married and that we just got a new place together and we're buying new things and that we just can't afford to spend too much....it's silly but really, we got the man selling the furniture to drop the price from $3000 pesos to $2300, the TV we were looking at was $1000 pesos and the guy told us that it's cheaper for "recien casados" (recently wedded). Although, it's strang to hear myself referred to as a wife, it's sooooo nice to get cheap stuff!

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