(Eduardo Verdugo/Associated Press)

(Eduardo Verdugo/Associated Press)

On my walk to a meeting this morning I passed the Canadian Embassy. It´s a rather ugly building with way too much security fencing around it for such a friendly country. I have walked passed it many times and never noticed it, to be honest. (Security fencing is rather common in Mexico.) But today I had to stop my walk and gawk. There was a line spreading three blocks long of people with yellow manila envelopes in hand. They are Mexicans applying for visas. Turns out Canada, the ever-welcoming, open-to-all-immigrants land to the far North has just changed their laws and now requires visas for all Mexicans entering their cold country. Crazy.

I wonder, is it a matter of national security? Are Mexicans flying to Canada and then sneaking south across the border to the US? (Hey, not a bad idea … in the summer.) I suppose I should read some articles on the matter … Apparently it´s in response to a rising number of false refugee status claims. 

So this got me thinking about how so many people want to go somewhere else. In Mexico, most want to go to the US. It is seen as “the promised land” for so many. Where you can work your butt off and make lots of money and buy lots of things and live in a house with a yard. and drive a nice car. and be in debt. and pay a lot in taxes. and live in a crappy neighborhood. and face possibly even more crime than in Mexico. But hey, it´s the American Dream! 

 

The American Dream

The American Dream

 

 

And then I thought about how I am sort-of doing the opposite. Trying to live the Mexican Dream. You know it … on a beach, margarita in hand, not a care in the world, getting a tan. Only my Mexican Dream reality is a little different, a little more concrete and a little less sand, a little more work and a definite dearth of siestas, and my Margarita is a short chubby Mexican lady who cleans my house … hey, at least one part of the dream is pretty fabulous! (gotta love the maid) But I still keep dreaming and hoping that my Latin Utopia will appear before my eyes someday. 

 

The Mexican Dream

The Mexican Dream

I guess we all have our Personal Utopia. I somehow got lost in a Gabriel García Marquez novel, searching for a lost romantic life on a beach in Latin America with soft salsa music playing in the background. My parents are obsessed with Alaska … the land of big open spaces, few people and great fishing. A significant other is eternally fascinated with Switzerland – the mountains with all that snow for skiing, the way everything just works on time, the perfectness of it all. And you? Where is your personal utopia??

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