The Musings of Bagger Dave are written by Dave Brooker
Well, it’s our last full day in Guayabitos so it’s not surprising that I’m thinking about the four weeks we’ve spent here – and anticipating with some trepidation the weather that awaits us back in Comox. Tomorrow will be the last morning for quite a while that we”ll be able to roll out of bed at 7.00 or 7.30, pull on shorts and tee shirts and be walking along the beach 10 minutes later with blue skies overhead, white sand beneath our feet and dodging the pelicans that congregate around the fishing boats that have been selling shrimp and dorado (not to mention shark) since they came ashore at 6.00 after a night’s fishing.
But much as I love the gorgeous weather and beautiful scenery here and, if I’m honest, the ridiculously cheap beer (I’ve just got a $6 refund back from the corner store across the street for the empties on a 24 flat of Pacifico that only cost $22 in the first place), I think it’s the people of Guayabitos and La Peñita that really make this place special. I’m thinking of folks like Juan, handyman extraordinaire at the Hotel Loma Linda, who I see every morning at 7.00 when I go down to the lobby to grab a coffee and who’s been on duty all night and will be working again during the day and yet still has a smile on his face and time for a chat. The cleaning ladies (Vero, Rosa, Lola, Carmen et al) are rightly proud of their work and it’s a pleasure to hear them singing as they go about their business. They are very patient with my amateurish attempts at Spanish and put up with me when I lapse into teacher mode and try to get them to master a few phrases in English. Lulu, on the front desk, collapsed in giggles this morning as Vero tried to repeat “I’m very well, thanks. And you?” and I kept saying “Good, Vero. Now try it again!”
And then there’s all the other folks that I see every day as I walk down the Avenida Sol Nuevo or along the beach. Not once has anyone failed to reply – not once – when I’ve said “Buenos días” as I passed by. These are people who, compared to anyone I know in Canada, lead tough lives. They work long hours for low pay and yet don’t seem to begrudge the gringos who spend their days lying by the pool or on the beach and their evenings in bars and restaurants. Maybe the resentment is there and I’m just not seeing it, but they strike me as good, honest, hard-working, God-fearing folk – just the sort of people that Mexico needs as it takes the difficult step from being a third world country to a first world economy. As the recession bites in the USA and fear of discrimination against ‘illegals’ rises, many well-educated emigrants are returning home and bringing their skills and savings with them. This can surely only lead to the rise of a strong Mexican middle class and a stronger economy with it and less of the historically huge divide between the haves and have nots.
Anyway, here are a few pictures I took on my way to the beach a couple of mornings ago:
This señora looks serious, but when I showed her the picture and told her she would soon be ‘muy famosa en Canada’ she burst out laughing.
8.00 a.m. These guys have a long, hot and dusty day ahead of them…
No point being in a rush when you’re heading down the main drag in Guayabitos…
… no point at all.
So to all the good folks of Guayabitos and especially to Brenda and Jesse and all the staff at Loma Linda, there’s only two things to say:
“Muchas gracias” and “Viva Guayabitos, viva Mexico!”