Life Can be Weird When You are Paying Attention
October 16th, 2011 by Les

“There is a place.  Like no place on earth.  A land full of wonder, mystery and danger!  Some say to survive it: you need to be as mad as a hatter!”  Of course…the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland

“Have I gone mad?” (Mad Hatter)  “I’m afraid so.  You’re entirely bonkers.  But I’ll tell you a secret.  All the best people are.”  Alice Kingsley of Alice in Wonderland

I bet you thought I was kidding!

There are, and I am not overstating this a bit, a whole panoply of characters down here in middle Mexico.  No more, I would venture to guess than any where else on earth.  However, unusual does not stand out here like a Renoir might at a yard sale.  Quite the contrary, conventional, common, unusual…well you get my drift…would certainly stand out more then, let’s say, a guy in a wide brimmed hat with tropical flowers adorning said brim and a flowing multi-colored serape over his Wrangler’s.  Trust me no one would bat an eye.  Well, let me re-state the obvious – those of us living down here would not bat an eye anyone visiting, not so much.

Let me take it a tad further….did you even expect me to quit while I was ahead…and say upon occasion the whole Wonderland effect has lulled me into a distinct feeling if a hookah-smoking caterpillar would greet me with a smile and rolled smoke I’d simply respond Buenos Dias. ¿Cómo está usted?

Sometimes, whilst tripping the cobblestones lightly I can believe in as many as six impossible things before breakfast. 

For instance, it is impossible for the sun to shine most of the time…no it is not…it shines here 98% of the time. 

For instance, I can hear music…of sorts… and not once think it sounds like chipmunks on steroids. 

For instance, there are no belly bombers here (White Castle burgers) but some of the best fried breakfasts one can consume whilst…..yes, tripping the cobblestone lightly. 

For instance, you might see people with wonderfully warm coats with fur-lined hoods followed closely by tank tops, sandals with socks and plaid shorts…never impossible more like probable. 

For instance, a burro, a horse and a mobile unit arrive at one corner at the same time…never impossible…it happens all of the time.  I’m not clear however who has the right away. 

For instance, what are the odds of talking to a person from, let’s say the United Kingdom, followed by one from Turkey, followed by one from…of all places…Mexico…followed by one from Canada….followed by one from the US…NEVER IMPOSSIBLE!

I used to be much more…”muchier”.  I have not lost my muchness I’ve added a bit of absurd appreciation to the mix.  Muchness is being able to embrace the absurd – by my definition – and not only think it normal but feel a kinship with it.  Living in another country in close proximity to the nationals of the region along with people from all over the universe allows you to, yes, be “muchier”.

We traveled to Chapala the other day.  David – have I mentioned I am so proud of him – decided to tackle the renewal of our FM3’s without benefit of local legal counsel.  We visited the IMS office in Chapala (we are so thankful we no longer have to go to Guadalajara…a lovely city but traffic is chaotic under normal condition…right now…with the Pan Am Games…it is beyond chaotic and has travelled into the world of insane).  The people in the Chapala IMS office are so very helpful.  They told David exactly what forms needed to be filled out at what website and wrote down directions for him to follow.

After returning home David got right to it.  The next day off we went with forms in hand, receipts for the monies owed for the renewal – $150 US less than had we used a facilitator – pictures for our cards and multiple copies.  They accepted our submittal and all that remains is to check their website next week and return to pick up our cards when they have processed our papers.

While at the IMS offices we had the opportunity to meet even more people from even more places.  Good humor abounds.  Camaraderie is second nature.  Helpfulness is automatic and a sense of adventure is always present.  Who could ask for a more interesting life?

Life can truly be weird when you pay attention.  When the day comes it is no longer interesting and weird, I shall futterwacken vigorously.  Yup, you guessed it a word from the Mad Hatter…one of my favorite people!!

Viva Mexico!  Viva Bonkers! 

Some more of David’s wonderful photography – People of Mexico….


If you would like to ask David about doing the renewal of your FM3, please email him at  If you are as absurd as I am, please feel free to email me at

2 Responses  
  • Stephen Millner writes:
    October 17th, 201110:48 pmat

    Great pictures Dave. In my current state of mind I am much more interested in pictures of people than I used to be.

  • LuAnn Oburn writes:
    October 17th, 20119:45 pmat


    I love your musings and sometimes am a bit surprised that I can even follow your train of thought! Not sure what that says about me but love to read your postings. Miss you much my dear friend.



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