Sunday, June 01, 2003

My parents have just told me they are spending the month of June in their house in Mexico. This is a house they have been working on, off and on, for about 10 years. They plan to retire there and it is now finished.

Its a small house, with mediterranean touches, and an adjoining cornfield. My father built a little bright yellow house in the cornfield which also serves as a small guesthouse.

It is in the mexican state of Michoacan which is lush and tropical. Like most rural tropics, the area has its disadvantages - regular insect seasons, unreliable power and other services - but also advantages such as gorgeous scenery (local jungles and volcanoes) and delicious local fruits.

I am a fan too of the tropical weather. The kind where the sky is sunny and clear one moment and then the next, stormclouds fly in like angry gods, rain pounds heavily against the stones, thunder roars in your ears and, perhaps an hour or so later, the clouds move on and the sky is again clear.

These colonial villages in Mexico have a distinct european feel. Few people have fridges; you buy your fresh bread everyday from the baker, your meat from the butcher. Everyone buys their fruits at a central market.

The designer and architect of my parent's house is my uncle Jorge. He is one of those multi-faceted men, brilliant in his own peculiar way. He has been a figure in Mexican politics, has founded charities, runs his own scholarship fund, promotes authors (he recently handed me a strange book on metaphysics which I dont quite understand) to publishers, builds houses, lobbies governments, and has been working hard to bring rural parts of Mexico into the modern world.

Here is a picture of him with my parents house in the background.

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