Many expats in Guadalajara celebrated Independence Day on July 7th at the American Society of Jalisco, because it coincided with the society’s regular Thursday luncheon.
After a traditional holiday meal of hamburgers fresh from the charcoal grill, potato salad, and baked beans, followed by an (almost) hot fudge sundae for dessert, I settled back to listen to one of the expats tell her story.
“I’m proud to be an American,” S said earnestly, leaning across the table, “but with things the way they are now, I have no desire to go back.”
She was referring, of course, to the turmoil and uncertainty surrounding the current U. S. presidential race, which is being followed closely by Guadalajara’s expat community.
“Besides,” S continued, “I’ve been here 27 years, so this is my home.”
She told me that when her husband retired over two decades ago, he announced that he wanted to move to Mexico. S was horrified.
“Give it three months,” her husband told her, “and if you can’t stand it, we’ll go back.”
“I’ll give it a year,” S said, in an outburst of magnanimity.
At the end of the year, she was hooked on Mexico, and nothing could persuade her to leave, not even the death of her husband a few years ago.
She now lives with her cat in a gated community, where neighbors watch out for each other.
“The Mexican people are so warm and friendly,” she said. “My neighbors are the best ever. This is where I belong.”
so much joy from the raindrops
pummeling my face
Text and photo © 2016 by Mark M. Redfearn, all rights reserved