I had high hopes for the past two weeks:
- Top Ten Albums of 2009 so far (get excited)
- July Playlist – Independence Day Spectacular (get more excited)
- Artist Profiles (homeless African paraplegics who live in a zoo – continue to be excited)
- TOT Info (you may be confused now, but you’ll be excited later)
Um yeah. You got none of that.
Last weekend I went to Mexico for the bazillionth time. And before assumptions are made, I voluntarily signed a covenant which stated that I would not drink alcohol for the entire time I was there. Or flirt with boys.
Cross the Otay Mesa border in San Diego, hang a left at the tire shop, go offroading for a bit, narrowly escape death by crazy tanker trucks and machine-gun-wielding policemen several times, and you will soon enter a migrant community known as Rojo Gomez.
I’ve been going down there for four years to build houses for families there who previously lived in boxes made of garage doors, tarp, and some scrap wood. Dirt floors on hills that frequently get hit with mud slides. No bueno.
These familes have become family to me. It’s interesting how much we have in common with each other. The first kid I ever met was named Adrian, who had the most sarcastic sense of humor ever (not that I could relate to that. Nope…). I should probably admit my lack of knowledge of Spanish, despite the fact that it is my father’s first language and I have a hispanic last name. But I have discovered this handy equation:
Broken Spanish + Broken or Nonexistent English + Smiles + Crazy Hand Gestures X Lots of Piggy Back Rides + Soccer Balls (Cubed) = Love
This is not a guilt trip.
Rather, this is a reminder to the intended geographical audience of this blog that three hours away is third world-ville. And I have no answers as to what your part to play is or if you even have one. But in relation to this blog, there is an amazing culture practically down the street, with some sweet ass music, some amazing food (um holy crap on crack, some amazing food. I swear that sometimes I think I only go there for the street tacos. But that isn’t true.) And the importance of family (and in Mexican culture, anyone within a 100 mile radius is familia. Which is all kinds of awesome.)
To put it mildly, my life has been dramatically changed (beyond words that can do justice) since discovering Rojo Gomez, and the neighboring town of El Nino. And as I helped build two houses last weekend for two rad families, it has taken some time to adjust back here, and I really have not felt like writing or checking out any new music. I’m getting back into the swing of things, so check back tonight or tomorrow. But processing and reflecting on all that occurred on that rad weekend was more important and worthwhile.
For now, enjoy some of the music from a few hours south.