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Puebla

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In Puebla I saw a little girl eating cigarette butts out of the gutter. I was wondering aloud why homeless women would bring children into the world, and then suddenly realised I was assuming they had a CHOICE.

I’m lucky. So, so lucky. Not just to have food and shelter and disposable income and Apple products, to be able to travel and take leave and complain about the food at a 5-star resort. I’m lucky to have health and options and prophylactics and doors with locks on them. How would you protect yourself living on the street? It sends chills down my spine to think about.

At night we went to the wrestling. It was every bit as ridiculous as I’d thought it would be – but surprisingly acrobatic for all of that. Some of the moves were really impressive, especially when pulled off by enormous bulky men – or, in one fight, an old man and a hugely fat, disturbingly limber gentlemen named “Porky”. It was hot and loud and the food vendors weave up and down the rows all night, adding “¡empanadas!” and “¡refrescos!” to the beating of drums and the cheers of the crowd.

I was delighted to discover ladies fight too – and even more delighted to realize there was nothing sexy about them (apart from the intrinsic sexiness of a woman in a costume kicking ass). They were solid, muscly ladies – playing up, of course, but awesome none the less. One of the girls was a truly enormous lady with some serious power. I was rooting for her – and it was obvious a lot of the men in the crowd were too.

The third member of our tour group is a middle-aged English postal worker named Ian. He spent the last 15 years nursing his sick mother, dotes on his cat, bitches constantly about “modern youth” – and believes the world is ending in December, that Prince Harry isn’t Charles’s son, and that aliens are among us.  He has a stutter, some kind of spiritual tattoo on his arm, and wears more than one Kabbalah bracelet. He also walks like an uptight duck, needs to cut his fingernails, and has a remarkable ability to insult everyone who isn’t him every time he opens his mouth. I can’t even begin to convey him in words, but I may have recorded some quotes as we went.

Ian quote of the day:
“I can’t believe there are people who don’t know there are pyramids in Mexico. Don’t they watch National Geographic? I watch National Geographic all the time!”

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Writer of things. Annoyer of cats.

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