Rants and raves, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized, Writings

Evil counts on the public to stop trying

It is government that built the highways and bridges, managed the airwaves, created law enforcement to keep the peace, raised military to protect the nation, educated the workers and business people, created order out of chaos, kept the air and water clean — without which the selfish bastards who cling to their cash and say “Nobody tells me what to do with MY hard-earned money!” would not have any cash.

Newsbreak: Without government, you would not have “hard-earned cash” because business and labor can not function without government support — just as government can not function without the support of the people.

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San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized, Writings

Welcome to Wally’s World

Wallace George Hawkins

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I’d like you to meet Wally, full name Wallace George Hawkins. He was born on Saturday at 6:54 p.m. in Kaiser Hospital, San Diego, weighing in at 7 pounds, 12 ounces.

Mother, Larisa, and father, Ryan, are as over the moon — as we are!

Wally and parents were home by Sunday evening and Wally got to meet his big brother, Augie.

Ryan is my second-oldest son, born between Brendan and Christopher. Wally joins three grandsons — Brody (Brendan and Cami), Tallac (Chris and Katie), and of course big brother, Augie (pictured above).

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As one of eight brothers and one sister, to me the production of sons and grandsons seems a foregone conclusion although some of my brothers and their wives, somehow, have brought daughters into this world.

There is nothing like a new-born baby to remind you of how unique, amazing and beautiful is every child. This has to be my all-time favorite miracle available on this planet.

Rose Alcantara and I are so filled with joy.

Rose right away suggested sending flowers and naturally found just the right bouquet on Amazon. I think they are arriving today (Tuesday). Say what you will, this is an amazing world.

I bought a second gift for the family — a non-contact, infrared, instant-read thermometer — bundled with 50 disposable face masks. Just seems like a gift for these days, especially with the inevitable number of visitors they will likely get.

Now comes the tricky part: how to schedule a visit to meet Wally in person in this wild and crazy Covid world. I’m looking forward to crossing at Tijuana and isolating for two weeks in San Diego before Wally and I get to hang out.

It makes sense, too, once “certified” COVID-free, to drive to Northern California to visit with Brody and Tallac and their parents while already in the States.

Not the family reunion we were all talking about at the beginning of the year but this is love and joy and family in the new reality.

Whatever it takes. I’m ok with it.

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San Miguel de Allende, Writings

In the garden: A meditation

I have so many pictures of the flowers and plants that fill our courtyard that I want to share with you. This oasis. This sanctuary. This place where we find peace and solitude during the global crisis.

This home in Colonia San Antonio, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

Flowers speak for themselves. They don’t need words to make themselves more beautiful. Unless the words are contained in a song.

Flowers and songs work well togther.

And no song is better than Van Morrison’s “In the Garden.”

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Memoirs -- fact and fiction, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Schultzie’s transistor radio started a revolt

Pocket-sized transistor radios were probably one of the first great subversive technologies. And smuggling one into a culturally hermetic community could spark a revolution.

That’s what happened when rock ‘n’ roll invaded the cloistered walls of my seminary.

Thank God.

As an eighth-grader I felt God was calling me to the priesthood. Two years later I realized that he had dialed a wrong number and I had, regrettably, answered.

I went all in: a missionary order whose Latin name translated to Society of the Divine Word (SVD).  The order had a very gothic looking building about 20 miles south of Erie, Pa., where they educated their high school recruits.

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Rants and raves, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Murals with a message say it loud: I mask-up and I’m proud

Frida is cool with wearing a mask. Just ask her. New Mural on 28 de Abril, just up the street from Orizaba.

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Masks as art in the window of Abrazos, the fabric store on Zacateros.

A cynic might say there are more murals, statues and pictures wearing masks in San Miguel de Allende than actual people.

I wouldn’t know.

Lately, the only people I hang out with are murals, statues, and pictures. And they all seem to be wearing masks.

Which is why I prefer their company to that of people who will not wear masks. They even look smarter than people without masks.

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San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Little escapes: Seventeen San Miguel experiences you can enjoy while sitting on your couch

Since the beginning of the Covid sequestration, I’ve been taking the occasional walkabout here in San Miguel de Allende. I’ve even taken some that were inspired by my beloved city but strictly products of the mind.

Honestly, we’re all kind of feeling like we are at the “break out” point.

I hope this will help.

Below is a selection of the walks — real and fantasy — that I’ve enjoyed over the past few months.

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San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Putting on a nice lunch for the crew rebuilding our street, because ‘We are Mexican’

My whole neighborhood put on a lunch for about 30 hungry and hard-working guys today.

They have been with us for a while now,  long enough to know many of them by sight and wish each other a good day. These are the guys who tore up our street, right down to the dirt, and installed new utilities — sewer,water, fiber-optic.

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Memoirs -- fact and fiction, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

A good Sunday morning walk to the Presa, unspoiled by the reality awaiting back in town

Horses and cattle graze where there was once water at the Presa, outside San Miguel de Allende. Chances are, the current rainy season will do its job and refill the reservoir.

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We went for a walk on Sunday.

Or maybe it was a hike. When does a walk stop being a walk and become a hike? Is it the distance? The degree of difficulty? The moment when you suddenly realize one call to Uber could end all this?

Anyhow, we went for a walk on Sunday.

Eight miles, round-trip.

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Memoirs -- fact and fiction, Rants and raves, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

No rhyme, no reason: Randomly curated photos from the Pandemic-era

Yeah, this is how I feel every day when I open up my computer and begin reading the news. I want to scream, lash out, run for cover, then hide in the bushes for the rest of the day.

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I know “curated” does not mean “stuff left over.”

A curator searches through his or her museum’s basements, files, archives, vaults, hallways, and subterranean sanctorums in search of pieces that support an important theme or idea.

The hope is that, as a whole, a curated show will tell a story or bolster an idea. A curated show is more than a theme — say for example, pictures with something red in them.

There is no doubt that during self-isolation, we have changed. As our lives slowed down, our perception has improved. I dare say that we are all seeing, feeling, hearing, loving, fearing in ways our previously busy, noisy, distracting, and demanding lives would not permit.

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