12.5.12

Marines vs. Narcos, or just Firecrackers?


Living in Mexico


It’s about a year ago that war has come to my neighborhood. It began with little things, like a student of mine calling me on my cell to warn me of a shoot-out on the thoroughfare, a kind of “Don’t go shopping now!” call.

The other day I was running a promotional campaign for my language classes on the main avenue, when a column of ten vehicles, all full with marines with their rifles at the ready, approached me. And it did feel like those rifles were pointed at me. I looked back, the other way, from where another ten vehicles with masked and armed soldiers drove up.

I was about to pack up and go home when all vehicles stopped, everybody got off and went into restaurant across the street for a couple of tacos. I went home, anyway.

The third of May is the ‘Day of the Bricklayer’ here in Mexico, and the bricklayers like to celebrate it with setting off lots of firecrackers. Well, I dunno, it makes me nervous.

I’ve just been told that the marines, who have taken up station a couple of blocks from here, were victim of a drive-by shooting. Well, they gave chase, and I’m still trying to figure out the differences between sounds made by machine guns and people harmlessly celebrating.

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