The end of fun

Emmett KellyMardi Gras was yesterday. We call it Carnival hereabouts.

While our town notices Carnival, no neighborhood notices it quite like mine. We go berserk — stark, raving mad.

Four nights running, there are concerts in the nearby plaza, way too nearby. Until about 3 a.m. We put up stages, different ones every night, that are steel scaffolds that soar three stories into the star-lit sky.

Connected to these monster stages are speakers, up to 50 of them. As Dave Barry says, I am not making this up. The nightly music, and amplified yelling is what it is, can be heard for miles. But we live only a block and a half away.

Lucky us.

On at least one occasion, one Carnival, the hysteria was in such fevered gear that when Ash Wednesday dawned, the brakes could not be applied. Instead of four nights of bone-breaking noise, er, concerts, there was a fifth.

Yes, on the night of Ash Wednesday, another concert roared on into Thursday, cracking all tradition of Carnival ending at midnight Tuesday.

Such is our enthusiasm for fiesta and tequila.

Apparently, that won’t be happening this year. We walked around the plaza this morning, which had already been swept clean, an overflowing garbage truck sagged nearby, and a woman told us last night’s revelry was the end.

Our silicone earplugs are back in the drawer.

And a sweet silence has descended. Thank God.

12 thoughts on “The end of fun”

  1. Our little town came to the conclusion that Manzanillo’s carnival parade was too big to compete with. So, the festivities are next week. After Fat Tuesday. In the middle of Lent. Of course, San Patricio puts on one of its big parties smack dab in the middle of Lent — for its patron saint.


  2. We were entering Zinapécuaro, Michoacán on Tuesday afternoon and noticed some revelry. It suddenly occurred to me that it was Carnaval. Other than a few big blockbuster fireworks booms at around 9 p.m. we noticed almost nothing more and slept in tranquility.

    You are just lucky to be in a pueblo so steeped in colorful tradition.

    Don Cuevas


      1. Wrong, señor. Cable, internet, cell phone are all comparable to Mexico (true free market vs. Carlos Slim monopoly). Our electricity is included in the rent, which is about $100 more per month than Mexico. Gas is free to the house, which is the sole heating source. Waste disposal is quite a bit higher, $20/month vs. $2. With both of us being able to earn decent incomes, we do better here. And it’s quiet.


        1. Ah, Ms. de Bois, but there was a reason I mentioned only utilities. As I wrote in an earlier post, we paid $411 total for electricity at three houses for all of last year. Fifteen years ago in Houston, I paid over a fourth of that per month in a two-bedroom condo. God knows what it would be up there now. As for your gas being free, of course, it is not. You’re paying somehow, likely factored into your rent. Or someone is. Same for your electricity. Those are the things I call utilities.

          If you’re only paying $100 a month more in rent up there than you did down here, you’ve got a very good deal, or you were overpaying down here. Or you’re living in a hovel. I hope not.

          As for cable, internet, cell phones, etc., which are not utilities to me, but luxuries, you point out something quite positive about living in Mexico. Many high-tech things that were significantly most costly down here years ago are not so much anymore.

          But you do have the quiet. I envy that.


          1. I should clarify a few things. We rent a farmhouse from grandpa, who hasn’t had an interest in raising the rent on tenants for 16 years. Thus, a great deal for here. We had a great deal in Mexico too.

            This property is blessed with water and gas wells, so yes, those resources are free as these are natural resources and have no inherent consumption costs. Electricity bills are cheaper in Mexico, largely due to the lack of heating/cooling in homes, not the cost per kilowatt. In many areas of Mexico, this isn’t really needed. However, along hot, humid, coastlines such as Houston or our former Mexican state, it absolutely is. I personally enjoy indoor climate control in the cold winters as well.

            Telecommunications are less of a luxury in Gringoland, where they are vital instruments of employment (as in our case). For their price to be on par with the U.S. means they are relatively expensive, considering average wages. Perhaps they’ll continue to go down in price south of the border.

            We realize, we do not offer a typical (or realistic) comparison for most folks. Just commenting that, for us, we seem to have it all, and struggle less (on many levels), north of the border. As do you to the south. We have more quiet. You have more siestas. Which we miss.


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