Friday, March 5, 2010


I returned yesterday from a week in New York City.  I needed a bite of the Big Apple--museums, theater, opera, Chinese food.  I got all that and a snowstorm, too--something I've been missing for years.

March 3 was the 13th anniversary of my move to Mexico, and after thirteen years, I finally feel like a tourist in my old home town.  New York has changed, I've changed, and now Mexico City is home.  Since I'd lived in New York for almost 30 years before moving to Mexico, the place is familiar, but the gap between my experiences in the two cities has widened.  Now it's wide enough so that I really feel like a visitor from abroad--and frankly it's a lot more fun.  What doesn't change is that New York is where my oldest friends live, and no matter how long I live in Mexico I will never have 'old friends' here.  So, if home is where the heart is, I still live in two places.

When I got back to el DF winter was over.  I was glad to return to the land of color (it seems that black is still the official color of New York).  It was 80 degrees, the sun was shining with a clear, golden light, and the first blue-violet jacaranda blossoms were out, along with the screaming scarlet of the colorìn flowers.  I strolled across the park for a couple of tacos at my favorite stand.  Not a bad place to live, I thought to myself.

But things have changed in a week, aside from the weather.  A new restaurant opened on my corner, the city is suddenly filled with bicycles that you can 'borrow' and ride from place to place (see this website to learn about the project), and the first marriage licences were issued to gay couples on March 4.  But it all moves at a more leisurely pace than in New York, and there's less tension in the air.  It may take me a few days to slow down, but it's great to be home.


Pat Morgan said...

Pat Morgan (Cuernavaca + Laguna Beach, CA)

Perra Brava said...

I guess this is how we know where HOME is, Jim. I've lived in so many places. Lately I've been more conscious that if I wear life like a loose garment, I'm home wherever I am. But nothing is so home-making than being in the presence of old friends who know me through and through...and love me. Let's meet for coffee very very soon. Rena

Rochelle Cashdan said...

I share your double sentiments: feeling of being home when in Mexico but also when in the US appreciating longtime friends (and for me, the landscapes I grew up with).

Tere Palm said...

Welcome back to the "colors" and tacos and "new" friends!
I am glad you are able to "unwind" in this huge and chaotic city!
Many people here spend a "lifetime" in traffic and hardly ever get to see the jacarandas not to mention a stroll in the park!
I love reading your blog!


Unknown said...

I have read a few of your blog posts and am quite intrigued. I am 25, just graduating university of cali with spanish lit degree.. I've been wanting to visit mex city for a long time, but have always listened to people tell me its too dangerous especially for a gringa like me travelling all alone... nevertheless your blogs and a few others have started my research into moving there. i lived in santiago, chile, and have lived in merida, yucatan for a bit, but I feel that there might be more job opportunities for americans in mexico city. What do you think? I also feel like i might be able to make friends easier in mex city... I am really interested in journalism/writing and would rather do something like that than work for a huge american corporation..
do you have any advice for me? Anything would help, from neighborhoods to look for housing in to job ideas to your fav places.. etc. i hope you can write me!

and then she said said...

I'm am constantly thinking about where 'home' is too. For now, NY... perhaps I will follow your path and want to come home to Mexico too.

-maggie o.

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