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absolutely beautiful

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Zihuatanejo, Mexico
Destination Expert
for Zihuatanejo
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3,668 posts
30 reviews
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absolutely beautiful

Mexico: A Cautionary Tale

I was warned.

Repeatedly.

Warned.

So many times it lost its potency.

Warned.

By well-meaning friends

living in "safe" gated communities with armed guards

By acquaintances

who have never been here

By media reports

glamorizing and spreading alarm

Who have a different definition of danger. And of what

constitutes safety.

Stupid me!

I didn't listen

to any of it.

Adventurous, perhaps with a death wish,

I didn't look.

Worse.

I wasn't careful.

And…

In "dangerous" Mexico,

I was robbed.

Stupid, stupid me!

Yes, Mexico…

stole from me…

A smile.

At first.

And then,

they got bolder

and took…

A laugh.

and bolder still, they ran off with…

my poor self-image.

Which turned into a larger felony: They took …

time

to fill me with compliments!

Telling me

repeatedly

how wonderful it is…

to be a woman

of experience.

Who smiles.

Who laughs.

Repeatedly.

Time after time. Again and again.

Until

finally, I believed them.

As I was smiling and laughing, and actually trusting myself,

They had the nerve to go and pick-pocket my lingering self-doubts,

my well-nurtured insecurities including

my belief that "real beauty" was limited to youth…

While I was still reeling in shock,

from having been robbed,

and pick-pocketed

Mexicans took

the opportunity to kill my previous ideas of what constituted

"hospitality",

replacing it with a generosity

that

is frightening

to even try to emulate,

yet so, so fortunate to know.

See how really dangerous Mexico is?

And it got even worse!

I hadn't recovered from such brutal behavior, when

they committed another truly horrible,

almost unspeakable

crime.

They gave me hope and optimism.

Repeatedly.

About who I was.

About who I could be.

About who we could be together.

Amongst wrapping me in love and force-feeding me laughter and

compliments and

smothering me in generosity

and unfathomably fabulous hospitality,

I was rendered helpless.

Utterly

helpless.

Stupid, stupid, stupid me.

I did not cry for help

or

run away.

Mexico took complete advantage of my situation and committed the

biggest atrocity of all. Once again, they stole …

my heart –

and my soul.

Now I'm so scared -

deeply, utterly terrified -

that I cannot return the favor.

Never happier,

I steal away…

to wish

this kind of "danger" on everyone.

JC Sullivan is a poet and writer and also a member of the Travelers

Century Club for people who have been to more than 100 countries

Aylmer, Canada
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1,350 posts
14 reviews
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1. Re: absolutely beautiful

Excellent! That was well written :-)

WISCONSIN..U.S.A
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498 posts
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2. Re: absolutely beautiful

What a beautiful way to express what most of us that LUV Mexico have said to many..many..nay-sayers...IMO.

Fort Myers, Florida
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1,578 posts
90 reviews
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3. Re: absolutely beautiful

And plagiarized from the Zihua "bored".

Saskatoon, Canada
Destination Expert
for Riviera Maya
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4. Re: absolutely beautiful

Very nice, thanks Linda!! :)

Zihuatanejo, Mexico
Destination Expert
for Zihuatanejo
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3,668 posts
30 reviews
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5. Re: absolutely beautiful

What do you mean by "plagiarized"...full credit is given to the author, so it certainly is NOT plagiarized. Yes it WAS on the Zihua forum..and it appears many places on the net. I was just sharing it with my friends here.

Yesterday I shared it with a Mexican family that we consider to be our family here in Zihua. It certainly didn't translate to be the wonderful use of words by the poet, but they got some insight as to how we view them and their country. They were touched.

UNITED STATES
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2,794 posts
119 reviews
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6. Re: absolutely beautiful

I'm thinking there may have been a Poem "similar" called Zihua "bored"???

Not positve...just assuming...

It is a nice poem tho. :)

Zihuatanejo, Mexico
Destination Expert
for Zihuatanejo
Level Contributor
3,668 posts
30 reviews
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7. Re: absolutely beautiful

You COULD be right Maryann. I took it to be a slam on the folks who frequent the zihua board (forum)...they have been referred to as being "bored" due to some of the back and forth insults that sometimes occur. Perhaps I was wrong, in which case I apologize to ted61.

The important thing is that the poet is very gifted with how she uses words to express her feelings and that she created something very beautiful, with perceptions that are shared by many people. Muchas gracias to the poet.

UNITED STATES
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2,794 posts
119 reviews
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8. Re: absolutely beautiful

Absolutely gifted....loved the poem...actually I did a hi-lite and paste and sent it off to a few people who are always concerned for me when I travel to Mexico. :)

Zihuatanejo, Mexico
Destination Expert
for Zihuatanejo
Level Contributor
3,668 posts
30 reviews
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9. Re: absolutely beautiful

I read it to Alberto & Claudia & the kids. Alberto helped with translation. Of course it wasn't so beautiful in Spanish, because the use of language just doesn't translate, but they understood the emotion and had a yet another glimpse into how Paul & I feel about our adopted family here, and our love for their country and culture. Another special moment.

10. Re: absolutely beautiful

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