|Baby Jesus, wrapped in plastic|
A year ago, I visited a remote coastal area in Oaxaca state in Mexico. While there, I met a tall Spaniard who told me, among other things, about the first in what ended up being dozens of journeys around the globe – his pilgrimage at age 16 to Santiago de Compostela. I remembered learning about this tradition from the summer I’d spent on the NW coast of Spain, where I lived with the family of yet another Spaniard -- much shorter -- whose family politely looked the other way from his exuberant gayness and welcomed me as his girlfriend without asking too many questions about the nature of what was our totally platonic friendship.
This year, I had occasion to mingle with an equally worldly audience at The Financial Times’ Summit on the Business of Luxury in Mexico City – people with Hungarian fathers, Argentine mothers, childhoods spent in Mexico City while attending German school – and then college in Paris. . . this type of ‘global citizen’ gathered to discuss emerging markets, the growing middle class in Mexico and their taste for luxury goods, art, fashion and empire building. Although I spent a full day wishing for an early death in a fancy hotel room, the parts of the conference I experienced were all quite fascinating – and stood in stark contrast to my much more modest (though still delightful) bus ride to Guanajuato at the summit’s end. Like any pilgrim, I had to travel long distances and endure bodily misery to better understand the turns my journey needed to take.
|Plaza Grande, Michoacán|