My Own Movie
The woman at the airline counter looks at me and says, “You are late to check in your luggage. You are going to have to take a different flight”. I looked at her, and then I looked at my watch, keep in mind I’m only 5 minutes late. I got choked up and said, “But it’s only been a few minutes!” She replies, “For international flights, you must give yourself one extra hour before the flight departs.” I feel very agitated, and as I can sense that I’m going to lose it, I imagine my pretty sport outfit with my beautiful Donald Pliner Signature designer shoes, turning into some kind of Pancho Villa caricature, including the guns and the moustache! My voice gets very deep and I reply, “Technically I WAS at the airport on time, BUT people were in front of me. It is VERY important for me to get on the plane. You DON’T understand…I am on my way to a VERY fancy gala wedding. I have purchased this fancy gauzy dress that I probably won’t have the opportunity to wear again except at a Halloween party! Besides, I desperately need to see my MOTHER.” She notices my desperation, and grabs my suitcase full of shoes. I am bringing lots of shoes that I am taking as gifts and of course my personal shoes; shoes just in case it rains, just in case it doesn’t rain, just in case we go out at night, and…. you get the picture!
When I am finally sitting on the plane, inevitably I wonder what if the plane goes down? Am I ready to die? The answer is yes. Not that I want to, but I still have so much to give, so much to do. I wonder if I could have my red lipstick in my hand while the plane goes down, or if I can just have memories with me, in which case I will need both hands. Imagine…all those shoes falling in the sky like confetti coming out of a Mexican piñata! No, I don’t want to die yet. We all have our own movie to shoot…my cameras are still rolling. I still want to have coffee at 4 am in my living room watching the moon through my window, and when I get sleepy I will move the cameras from my movie into the bedroom and fall asleep until the sun comes up. Time flew by, and before I knew it I realized that I had not died, but I had arrived at the Guadalajara Airport.
Mexico is a very misunderstood country. I don’t blame people for thinking the wrong thing if they haven’t been there. Some people might think that woman wear long braided hair with full colorful skirts and that we take a siesta in the middle of the day. It is the same misconception that some people from Latin America have about the United States, that everyone has blond hair and blue eyes. But if you visit Mexico you will find the full end of the spectrum of lifestyles- from very wealthy to progressive to artistic to traditional to very “westernized.” Guadalajara, where I am from, has a population of 13 million (that’s including all the connecting municipalities)! It is cosmopolitan and it is rural all in one. But, if you go to Guadalajara, you must have the experience of going to a restaurant where there is a Mariachi group playing and the tequila is flowing! Mariachis actually originated in Jalisco and the word mariachi derives from the French word “mariage” which means marriage: this music was played at weddings therefore the name evolved into mariachi.
We took my mother to one of these places. On one side, I have an aunt hugging me tightly and giving me a kiss on the cheek, telling me how much they all have missed me, leaving her red lipstick mark long enough for another one of my aunts to smear my cheek. The mariachi group plays so loud that it makes my hair and eyelashes fly like ravens in the sky. My mother sits on the other side of me, and I look at her and her blue eyes are peaceful. She and I don’t need to talk. I’m holding her hand, or is it that she is holding mine? We both know how much we love each other. And I don’t know how much more time I will get to hold her hand again.
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