Friday, January 22, 2010


After three days of involvement in the Mexican educational system, a few things are apparent:
  1. It's hard work being a parent. I mean like, hard homework. So far, we've had to build a diorama of the tundra, think up a story exploring a value like "liberty," "truth," "virtue," etc. (A. has decided on "The Fox Who Cried 'Boy'"), cut out and laminate parts of a game exploring the life cycle of six animals, and attend a meeting on the organization of a parade for the kids. On top of this D. has been running around to every papeleria (stationery shop) in the city tracking down the many and varied implements of learning required by school. There are many, many papelerias in Zacatecas.
  2. It's really important to be on time picking up and dropping off your children. It's mainly important because so few people are.
  3. You should really keep yer kid clean. With a real bath, hot water and all.  Scrub them down. If you don't, they'll probably smell and other kids won't want to have anything to do with them. I mean, come on.
  4. If you're good, there is a chance you will get a star.

In other news, Skype is very cool (as is google chat). It's even cooler if you have a webcam on your computer. It is pretty much like what you were promised by science fiction. So, if you know us and want to talk, by all means set up Skype on your computer. It is easy and free. If you are a gmailer, there is video chat which works quite well, too. Just fire up a chat and install it. I discovered this today buggin' one of my fav nieces. This info is particularly important for certain Grandmamas, who shall remain anonymous.

Also, today I got my first welcome-to-Mexico-gringo-you're-too-tall greeting, in the form of a low-slung canopy support smack in the middle of my brow/sunglasses. It didn't put me on the mat, but it was a near thing. I usually average 1 to 3 of these a month. Since I can still see, I'm looking forward to the next occasion...


  1. Loving the updates, Patrick. Sounds (and looks! especially from the once-again frozen north) like you're having a fantastic time, the rigours of the Mexican educational system notwithstanding.

    I'm about four years behind the Skype curveball -- maybe this is the year for me?

    xo N

  2. Oh, by all means get going on Skype. If nothing else, A. would love to talk to you, show you pictures, dance, read you a book, or just shriek, for like an hour. Doesn't that sound like fun? I'm thinking there is an untapped performance-art angle to the video-Skype thing.

    We are having a good time here, at least when we are not trying to figure out some other logistical knot. Come and visit us! The beach would be the perfect antidote to the frozen North. And, well, academia...