Aug.2005 - Dec. 2005
Guadalajara, Jalisco, and Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico
Introduction Latin America 101A: Mexico
001. Informacion General
Size of the land of Mexico is about 5 times bigger than Japan. An official name of Mexico is Estados Unidos de Mexico.
Although almost all of its 100 millions of population speaks Spanish and practice Christianism, language and culture of local natives Nahuatl is also cared for and preserved.
The northern border is faced to the US and around there the climate tend to be really dry that sometimes sandstorm occurs. The south is faced to Guatemala and there you can call it tropics.
And the city I lived called Cuernavaca which is located in little south of the central, about 1,500m above sea level. Cuernavaca got a nick name "La Ciudad de la Eterna Primavera", so all year around the climate is nice n mild that a variety of colorful flowers are everywhere all the time. It felt so good to live there, sabe.
The capital city Ciudad de Mexico aka D.F. is said to be one of the world's most crowded single city that over 20 million people live and work in the metropolitan D.F. So a traffic jam on highways and in subways during rush hours are like Tokyo, Seoul, New York, you know one of those the biggest cities.
002. Los Vecinos
Mexican ethical groups in my eyes.
- Mestizo, mix of local natives and non-natives: 60-70%
- Indigenous, local natives, 15-30%
- Caucasians, Gringos and Europeanos: 10-15%
- Others, like Caribbeans and us Orientales aka Chinos: 2-3%
Almost all Mexicanos I met knew about Japan and they even knew the people in Japan aren't Chinese. So they called me Japones anyway.
Social structure of Mexico at glance seems to be very similar to those other Third World countries, that a very little percentage of group of people run the nation, its business and politics. In case of Mexico, descendants of Spaniards aka los conquestadores hold a majority of monopolizing business. As well as the gap between rich and poor are so obvious.
While many of light skin people live up in gated residential area, some dark skin people beg around the corner and sell some cheap products like gums and flowers with bear feet. However I didn't see homeless people, and I came to wonder why. I asked one of my field advisers Senor Polo who has lived in Japan as well as worked in the US. He told me something interesting. Unlike Japan and/or the US, so-called First World nations, families in Mexico don't give up on family members and throw them out on street. Hmm, warm, very warm heart Mexicanos.
And a stereo typical of Mexicans are positive and happy, and I think it is true. This good vibes are shared with other Latin American and Caribbean nations too. General impression of Mexican people are happy and easy while hard working and romantic.
One of my Mexican friends one day said, "Nochi, there is no way not to approach her when you meet a beautiful woman". He taught me so simple yet vital thing in life. His attitude, carrying positive vibes, moving forward, that's like respectful seems like working hard towards own happiness. Looked like they don't get stuck with negative causes.
This is like totally centered by Yang energy, sabes, Yin-Yang as Tao as Eastern philosophy describes the interconnectedness of the world.