Editor’s Page – January 2023

Missing Mexico

For the past few months I have been in the USA tending to medical issues. I find that after 17 years in Mexico, I am out of step with the USA. I recently went to a pharmacy to pick up a prescription. It is totally unlike Mexico. Later at the checkout station I was bewildered and lost. 

There were do-it-yourself machines where you paid by credit card or debit card. Everything else was closed. I stood there looking confused and mystified until an employee said, “Ma’am, I can help you here.” I asked, “Do you take CASH?” He smiled and said, “Only at this register.”

I couldn’t believe that. And when I did use a credit card I had to “tap.” I didn’t have to sign anything. To me it was amazing.

As a rule, I don’t watch television, but being in the States and waiting, sometimes there was nothing else to do, so I watched TV. They have these interruptions in programs called commercials. And these commercials advertised everything. Local news channels advertise a lot of local lawyers and law firms. And, of course, their own news. Later I learned about so many different diseases I’d never heard of for all the different medications they advised I ask my doctor about. I always thought my doctor was supposed to tell me what I should take, not the other way around. The litany of side effects—which I can only guess the pharmaceutical companies’ lawyers insist they include as a disclaimer—is downright frightening, making you wonder which is worse, your condition or the possible side effects of its cure.

This has also been the first time I’ve spent any amount of time in the South. The people here are friendly. In restaurants, they have many items on the menu I’d never encountered before. I have to choose between tea and sweet tea. I learned that they batter fry just about everything. Even pickles!

I experienced my first severe storm off the coast. There were hurricane warnings, and the TV announcer talked about a number of things I had never had to think about before. Having grown up in the Midwest, I’ve dealt with many tornados and high wind storms, but never had to worry about flooding and the devastation that hurricanes can wreak.

Mexico has taught me about water spouts and landslides. Even slight earthquakes. But to this point, everything seems manageable.

More than anything, I miss my Mexican family and friends. I can’t wait to return. And no, I won’t complain about traffic on the carretera. At least not for a long while!

For more information about Lake Chapala visit: www.chapala.com

Victoria Schmidt
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