I used to think I was Mexican. And then I realized that, except for my distaste of the cold and my love of quesadillas, I’m definitely, 100% Canadian.
I am officially in mini-Mexico. Except its the neighbourhood of Dallas, in Kamloops, and we are 15 minutes from town and I am 4.25 hours from my friends. But other than the clearly Canadian surroundings, I eat, speak, and hear Mexico every minute of every day. I’m not going to lie, it makes grieving hard.
You decide … am I in mini-Mexico?
– The faint odour of burning plastic fills the room. I look up from my book and quickly ask what the hell is going on. Oh, nothing, just tortillas in a Ziploc bag in the microwave. “There’s nothing wrong with that … “. Yes, Mexicans, yes there is. Can you smell that odour? That’s a small dollop of carcinogen on your tortilla.
– “Canadians eat a lot of bread and cheese.” —-> this is coming from a culture that eats primarily beans, cheese, rice, and tortillas. I like Mexican food, but I definitely don’t like cow bone marrow, high salt content, or apple pie for breakfast. And I don’t just eat bread and cheese, or frozen food. I like vegetables too, beyond limes and avocados, and I make balanced meals, so don’t look at what I prepare like its martian food.
– “Wait!” I turn around as we are leaving the farmer’s market to see one Mexican shuffle over to me in a hurry. “Wait. We forgot the cilantro and the blah-bloo-blah-blah herb.” I’m sorry what? Cilantro is not in season at the farmers market, we have to go to the store and get the imported stuff. Because we have winter. And also what the heck is blah-bloo-blah-blah herb? You can certainly go ask the El Salvadorian vendor over there, but I’d just go ahead and give up on that.
– I’m minding my own business, doing a bit of work on my computer with my headphones on when I hear a muffled sound of … what is that? … singing? Oh yep, there are Mexicans singing religious songs around a candle in my house. Respectfully, I continue to mind my business …
– I’ve never heard anyone comment about the weather the way I’ve heard the Mexicans complain about it. “Oh wow, now its really cold” followed by, “Oh, well now I’m hot but I’m not going to take my sweater off because I know I will soon be cold.” followed by, “Is this wooden house going to fly away? Because it’s so windy and I’m worried about tornados“.
– It’s really fun to watch them discover things. Like how to close the blinds (really, really slowly). Or how to push a lawn mower. Or using a microwave (if I push “1”, and wait, something is bound to happen right?). Or a dishwasher. Or fighting with them about the cleanliness of our drinking water. It’s fairly entertaining.
This is a live report from mini-Mexico. Stay tuned next time, same remote Canadian neighbourhood, same oddball Mexican visitors.
I’m going to drink a cervesa in the meantime to keep my sanity.