“The simple things in life are also the most extraordinary things and only the wise can see them.” - Paulo Coelho.
**Heriberto Jaramillo pouring freshly fermented pulque for his guests on his ranch just outside Nopala, Hidalgo, December 8, 2019.**
No place had a greater impact on me in 2019, than Mexico. It was where I started my year and where I ended it—short a day (as I was Belize by Jan 31)—with a lifetime of change and growth in between. From my Mexican American professor at Harvard, to my personally influential teaching fellow who once was labeled as “illegal immigrant,” to the countless authors, artists, voices, and researchers —some still living and even more no longer with us — whose work I interacted with, I owe a debt of gratitude. But even more, to the people of Mexico who showed me incredible hospitality and revealed the “México Profundo,” I was honored to be your guest and your friend, especially in a political climate where our rhetoric is as difficult to navigate as are our borders. Beneath my feet, the terrain told its own story, as did the varying landscapes I interacted with: from mountains, to desserts, to alpine forests and lakeside tiny towns. I walked hundreds of miles across dusty paths, busy city cobblestones and sidewalks, and climbed countless mountainous inclines. As I start this new year and new decade living in Mexico’s southern neighbor, Guatemala, I am thankful for the time I was gifted in Mexico and eager to accept the gifts this new place offers me, as well. And in perhaps some small way, give back as well.
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