From the Hills of Maine to...?
Rick Warner, Professor of History
“Wherever you go, there you are,” we read on the cover of Carl Franz´s People¨s Guide to Mexico. The unexpected returns of engaging another culture are invariably accentuated by this open, strikingly Taoist attitude. (Credit David Blix-tzu for the thought.) In a few short days our students have found a comfort zone moving around this sprawling megalopolis. Their eyes are opened, as you can surmise from these logs. Their minds have shed judgmental habits, most notably when I steer them in the wrong direction. Sometimes there are benefits: our latest misdirection ended up with meeting Jeremy Hartnett and Jill Lambert in a waiting metro car. They shared our amazement at the pyramids, captured well in Ryan´s log. This same Ryan who remarked on the smog as we first entered the capital, “I am used to this… I am from L.A.”
Today was a holiday in Mexico City, as they celebrated their Revolution. The promise of their Revolution –social equality—has yet to be reached, as Justin Raisor indicates. Yet the hope, the will to strive for that goal is everywhere in evidence. Historical memory of the Revolution, as with the pre-Columbian pyramids, is woven into the fabric of Mexican life. We can feel it here, and we are trying to put it into words. But of course these are only approximate.
We celebrated a tradition of our own today atop the Pyramid of the Sun. I am pretty certain that this is the first time that “Old Wabash” was performed here. The other visitors were, well, rather impressed. Look for the audio visual version to be loaded on the web on our return. From the Hills of Maine to…. ¡Viva Mexico!