Wednesday, November 5, 2014


Recently, I found myself in the back of a taxi cruising down a main avenue in Mexico City, relieved by the surprising lack of traffic. As I gazed out my window into a sunshiny day, the driver pulled me from my thoughts with rapid fire questions about what I was doing in his city and of course, how I liked the comida. He was a kind man with eyes that smiled brighter that his toothy grin. With generous head nods and chuckles, he heartily approved of all my favorite things about Mexico. 

Moments later, though, he was peering up into the rearview mirror and disapprovingly wagging his finger at me when I answered "no" to a series of questions inquiring if I had been here or done that. He frowned, wrinkles deepening, and said, "My white do not know my country."

I left feeling dejected, yet with a renewed determination to explore my city. See, when I arrived here, I told myself that I didn't have to try and squeeze every wonderful thing about Mexico City into a week and a half because I wasn't a tourist. I was making a home here and those things would come in time. But maybe, with that mindset, I lost some of the drive to see all the "must-see's" and to do all the "must-do's". 

So while my lifelong friend, Nicole, was here for a visit this week, it was the perfect time to be a tourist. And based on the taxi man's recommendation, I knew where we needed to go. Three subway lines, a train ride, and some walking later, we arrived at the floating gardens of Xochimilco. 

After the boat ride, the mariachis, the vendors, the food, everything. . .I understood why my taxi driver was so adamant about visiting this place. He helped me see the value of being a tourist right outside my own home. 

 And maybe I know his country just a bit more for it. 

No comments:

Post a Comment