Monday, January 19, 2009

Mañana in México

The mañana in Mexico is a veritable breakfast burrito of aesthetic delights. I imagine the scene unfolding to the tune of Bolero, but perhaps some off-key mariachi would be more apropos. There's an abuelita sweeping fallen branches off the sidewalk with a tree limb. The dueño of the carnicería is hosing off the front of his crumbling establishment and a pack of chihuahuas are lined up along the curb, lapping up the soapy water. The morning's first narcotráfico detail cruises by at five miles an hour, the truck bed full of soldiers flashing silver smiles at the gringo as he walks to work, automatic weapons dangling from their hips like some oversized genitalia they've lost interest in. A yellow dog of indeterminate breed trots down the sidewalk with a prickly pear fruit in its mouth. The hospital morgue incinerator fires up and shrills, emitting a ghastly gray steam, and somehow it's neither out of place nor unpleasant at 7:30 AM. A hungover mariachi band swaggers down the middle of the road, the accordion wheezes. The horse-clopping of the taco vendor chopping chorizo, the low flatulence of cheap motorbikes, the chik-chik-chik of the girl at the tienda stacking coins. I'm not sure whether it's the morning in Mexico or if it's mornings in general that do it for me. Prior to Mexico, I never got up before noon.

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