The here and now... and what and why

Complacency is a trap. At least that’s what I was thinking when I up and left the comfort of a Yankee prep school gig, where I taught music, amongst other things, for 28 years. There was also that life long career as a composer, musician and artist.

First, it was a year in St. Thomas, USVI, working as a reporter and shooting photography and then, a year in San Agustin Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico.
Time passed.
More time passed and a year back in the Athens of America followed by a hasty return to Oaxaca where it is all happening.
A couple of years in San Sebastian Etla and now, just down the road in San Pablo Etla. Life is good.

Click on an image to see it larger.
For additional photography please visit my flickr page.
You can find my music on Jango (World & latin - Worldbeat) and at iTunes and most online stores.
¡Soy consciente de todas las tradiciones del Internet!
If you are coming to Oaxaca, please contact me for tours or advice.

Santo Domingo

Santo Domingo
The view from Corazon del Pueblo

The hereafter re me

My photo
Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico
Musician, photographer, videographer, reporter, ex-officio teacher, now attempting to be a world traveler

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Anatomy of a blockade

Welcome to my world.  There was a blockade yesterday, # 4,266,449 of the year, of an unimportant road...uh, oops, the Pan American Highway.  It continues today.  In fact all of this is within walking distance of my house and it is one hell of an effective blockade, everything is sealed off.
 Massive police presence... not.
And it is all about water.
Here's a little background.  We are in the dry season and water is scarce and essential.  Folks in the city are really hurting with lots of stories of little or no water.  San Agustin Etla, the village just to the north of me, has a pipeline that supplies twenty percent of the water to the city, but they have shut the valves and there is no water coming through.  Why?  Because the city has not paid for the water they have used already and we are talkin' months of non-payment.  Shutting off the pipeline is an effective weapon in San Agustin's arsenal and they do it every now and then.  However, there are villages and settlements that are caught in between, like San Pablo Etla, Viguera and Pueblo Nuevo, that are running out of water and they are, to put in mildly, pissed off.  Hence the blockades. These are the real deal with buses and double semis blocking the intersections so effectively that I could not even squeeze through and had to walk around.
This is however, normal life and people adapt quickly.
Folks coming from the city jump out of buses or cabs and walk/run through the blockades to jump into awaiting cabs to continue their journeys.
And there were plenty.
Drivers have to bypass the mess by going on back roads, but I think even some of those were blocked yesterday.  Some cars and trucks looked like they were trapped for the duration.  Yesterday's lasted from 7 AM to 9 PM.  Today's started promptly at 7.

Here is an article from Noticias.  Run it through a translator to get an idea.  As in all things oaxaqueño, there are so many layers to these issues, the mind boggles.  To quote from Apocalypse Now, "You need wings to keep above the bullshit."

Now just where did I put those damn wings?

Actually, I am lucky.  I am on the right side of the city and live right near a pipa or water truck, station and just had one delivered.... $34 US for 10,000 liters.

No comments: