The end of my time here in Mexico City is looming and I don’t honestly think I’m ready. At this point, my mind is telling me that staying here on a much more permanent basis is a great idea. As I learn more about the city and find myself slipping into my more regular speed in life, the city seems to move with me, or in a less narcissistic way: I move with it.
The tempo and attitudes I am surrounded by are what I think I had been missing in the UK. Although it has been only just over a month, I can see where my groove may be here. I can see where I could slip into the behemoth of a collage that makes this city what it is. I’m not there yet, but I think I can just about glimpse where I would comfortably exist, and I like the way it looks.
I wonder if it is just me falling back in love with traveling again, not that the passion wasn’t always there, but it’s easy to forget just why the heart is so fond of something after a long absence. The fears of loneliness, disorientation and financial ruin have all but dissipated as I have made my way in this very alien place. My confidence has started to return, I can feel myself becoming a person I am happy with, and the world is opening up again.
Being surrounded by beauty at every turn and welcoming people at every stop helps for sure. I think if I was a Mexican in the same position and had chosen to expatriate to Hull, the story might be a little different. The only Joy and Glory in the East Riding are the two hags who run the chippy opposite Princess Quay shopping center.
I have a few weeks left here and I’m trying to make the most of them. A few tourist attractions made my list this past week. I want to get as many done as possible, although the chances of doing them all are nil, it would take years to even just do all the museums.
I visited a beautiful old building in the historic center of the city. They host live music around the city for free, or very close to. The concerts are usually classical or in that thread. I picked one for the evening without researching the artists and made my way in.
The duo played the flute and cello and they made quite a lot of noise. They obviously had some real fans in the crowd, people who had come especially to see them, so I guess the music they make appeals to some at least, there’s no accounting for taste.
The curly-haired fellow on the wind instruments played well but erratically. He blended a combination of rapid, well-executed scales with his own voice. They came together wonderfully, often seamlessly, and were at times quite mesmerizing. He also punctuated this with too many mouth noises. Pops, clicks, breaths, screams, screeches, and garbled psychotic yelling all blasted out around the beautifully painted atrium.
The cellist put her instrument through a fresh hell. She played it like she was trying to shove her bow through a bandsaw. She was producing noises you would expect to hear in metal fabricators or a slowed-down recording of a car accident. The instrument screamed and creaked under her abuse, at some points it sounded like the popping of stressed wood, and at others like she was nailing cats to horny foxes.
It worked sometimes to be fair to them. As long as I closed my eyes and stopped watching the self-love performed by the windmans face and actions. His displays of facial ecstasy and wet panting into the microphone told more about how much he thought of himself than his oversized pink suit ever would. It was free, not for me, and an experience at the least. I didn’t feel like I had wasted an evening.
I also visited a few galleries. I finally made it to the modern art gallery in Chapultepec park. It was, for the most part, fantastic. The modern art of the past 100 years or so in Mexico City is incredibly bleak. Death is present at all times and sunlight rarely illuminates the figures within the works. Struggle against power and poverty runs through them all.
It is amazing to leave Europe and realize that the whole world has had artistic movements utterly separate from anything I had ever seen in my limited view. There are similarities for sure, but the work is completely new to me and feels like I am discovering a new flavor for the first time. There was also a pair of Rivera’s trousers in there, that guy was a fucking unit, I could have fitted in one leg. No wonder he painted such massive pictures.
I also managed to blag entry to a gallery opening just around the corner from my apartment. It is art week, which is not a week for people to go see art, it’s a chance for the artistic financial elite to get noshed off by aspiring artists at ludicrously expensive exhibitions. It is a networking event, a way for money to get pushed around, and the white heads to pick another piss artist to blow up into stratospheric fame so they can hide more of their money in investments.
The event was fantastic. A free bar, night-long food carried around on fancy trays, and a heavy media presence. The crowd dressed up for the most part. There were people trying to be fashion icons, and some folks just looking fly as fuck. Everyone was very beautiful, and within about an hour of me being there, most of the crowd was coked out of their gourds. I abstained, drank my fill, and got jarringly stoned.
There was one guy in a tall hat shaped a bit like a very long bell with a little nob on top. He was also wearing shoes with wooden blocks for soles. The blocks were about half a foot tall. It was all complimented by his knee-length shiny coat. Being baked made me a little unsure of what I was seeing, Pheobie was kind enough to confirm he was real, and also stopped me gawking, apparently, that’s just how they dress in New York now. And to think, I felt self-conscious wearing a turtle neck.
The crowd was great fun; we danced, chatted, and lots of people exchanged information. I had the pleasure of standing with my little pink eyes and gormless grim while someone with big white halos on his nostrils waxed lyrical about his love for all things art world. There is nothing more boring than an idiot on gear, someone with something to say can be pretty entertaining.
The night rolled on and I realized there is a world out there I will never be a part of, nor would I want to be. Don’t get me wrong, it looks glamorous and very exclusive, but it all seems like a little bit too much work. I also have nothing to offer. Being a part of it for a night was like a rollercoaster through an Attenborough documentary. I was discovering a whole new world, new people, a new way of interacting, and all in a thunderous clamor of noise, booze, and sights. Given a chance I would love to have another go, even better, tag along and report on ‘The Life’ like a reporter on cross-country rallies.
My housemates still sleep on the floor, I think. On an uninflated airbed. It’s on me at this point, it’s on them.
Apologies for the lack of pictures, I accidentally formatted my camera.