Thursday, July 10, 2008


Snot is dripping from my nose and I think it is from this city. The traffic in Oaxaca is quite bad, cars constantly filling the narrow streets, their exhaust spewing in the air, the town choked with the smell of diesel, of old model cars and their bad emissions. Bonnie got a root canal done here, which in Mexico apparently takes a week, and so we are stuck in this town until Monday night, her last appointment then at 7 pm. After that, we are going to take a bus, maybe the back of a truck, to Puerto Escondido, arriving there too late to scout out a nice, cheap place, instead probably having to secure a place before going there.

Oaxaca is a nice town to see, but I feel like I have seen it all, that I saw it all after two days, and coming here after the excitment of Mexico City and having to spend so long here is certainly what is causing me to feel like this town is too slow. I am so ready for the beach and cannot wait until we can go there. Hopefully, this weekend will be exciting. There are lots of bars, some gay clubs included, that are only open here on weekends and hopefully that will open new aspects of this town to me. The one gay bar I went to was a little sad, but also quite amazing, rainbows painted across the wall, portraits of John Wayne and Marilyn Monroe hanging up, yin and yang, butch and femme. Last night, we went to this hip traveller's bar and watched a documentary about the massive protests that took hold of this town a couple of years ago. We left there and went to another bar, filled with travellers, this town full of them, and the gay bar was free of them, of course - thank god. Tomorrow night we are going to go see a luche libre match.

Yesterday, we saw the ruins of Monte Alban. It was maybe the most amazing thing I have ever seen - I am trying to think of what may be it, and certainly some of the first naked bodies I saw in a sexual way, that thrill so singular and unrepeatable, may actually hold that title, but Monte Alban is the type of thing that makes you say Wow a lot. Wow, wow, wow. You take a bus on a winding road up a moutain, the bus taking the curves, sharp, on the narrow road way too fast for the good of anybody, past shacks and roadside taco stands, the view of the city of Oaxaca in the valley incredible. Monte Alban is at the levelled top of a mountain, up in the clouds, overlooking the world, all these beautiful structures, some thousands of years old. And it is really humbling and incredible to be standing amidst such things, contemplating the people that once inhabited the city and imagining what it was like in that time, life among the clouds.

Today, we took a bus out to El Tule. Two little old ladies got on the bus, one with a tied up bunch of live chickens, the other with a tied up bunch of live turkeys. They put their goods bought from the market at the back of the bus like regular luggage and sat near the front of the bus side by side, the activity so peculiar to me so normal to them. At El Tule, we saw El Arbol del Tule, which is a massive, massive tree two thousand years old. The tree is next to a church and it makes the church seem like a sandhouse, like something a kid built, a joke. To contemplate this massive tree through the fog of some cold medicine and a dripping nose brought forth so many thoughts, similar thoughts to those thought at the ruins seen on this trip, thoughts pertaining to the nature of time and the short blip that life, particularly my life, is within that span of time.

The sun is out and the other two are at the Oaxaca culture and history museum, and I could not go look at more history housed in buildings. I am a little overwhelmed with it right now. I am going to go the market and smell things and eat things and am going to take a poop, which I will probably have to pay three pesos to do, handed a few sheets of toilet paper for my payment, toilets here a very interesting business.

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