Posted 2 years ago on Dec. 28, 2011, 7:38 p.m. EST by Rico
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
My wife and I happen to be spending the holidays in Mexico this year, and I thought I would pass along a story and some observations.
We spent a good part of the day in a small Mexican village yesterday. Several houses and businesses made of an eclectic mix of concrete, mud brick, and ferns lined the dirt roads that crossed the center of town. All were in various states of repair and all boasted a dusty desert pastel of primary colors. The cars, like the homes, were in various states of repair, and several men were in front of their homes working to prepare their cars for the next day's work. There were dogs and children running around the streets playing without restraint, and everyone seemed to know everyone's child and dog by name. Several mothers in faded aprons were cooking over open fires, and there were small groups of neighbors talking everywhere. The sound of children laughing, dogs barking, and neighbors calling out to one another created a symphony of vitality around us. We were smiling as we walked down the street looking for a place to relax, and felt welcomed in spite of the good-hearted teasing we received because of our poor Spanish.
We settled in to a concina with a mangy dog napping on the front porch and ordered some tacos and margaritas. We found the food and service superb. As we leaned back and looked out over the street with margaritas in hand, it dawned on us that these people were happy, happier than any people we have seen in a long time.
In this Mexican village, we surmised that one's "insurance" was the goodwill of one's neighbors, that one's "daycare" was whoever was home, and that everyone had the grandchildren we so desire. All the children are the children of all, and your community could be relied upon to help when help was needed. This, we concluded, may have to do with the fact that everyone in the community shared common Christian values of family, honestly, hard work, and charity.
We left our little village with a smile and fond wishes of a good day by our hostess. We left behind a few pesos and left with much more than a full stomach; a realization that it's not only the 1% that have been seduced, but we the 99%.
When people ask "What has happened to America?" I will forever think back to our little Mexican village and answer, "We have worked so hard not to need one another that we no longer know one another. We have substituted privacy and a fine home full of meaningless possessions for community. We work hard only so we can work harder and have forgotten that true wealth is in our friends and family. We have replaced personal charity for our neighbor with government. We think we can buy happiness and that paved roads, nice clothes, a pretty car, and good teeth are somehow more valuable than people. Though controversial, I will also suggest we have lost the shared faith and community that once bound us together as Americans with the common yet simple values of family, hard work, honesty, and charity. We have lost the American village."
This vacation has been enlightening, to say the least. ;o)