If Paris is a lady and London is a gentleman, you must be the fifty-year old smoking rocker flirting with the sensual young Latina at the bar. You don’t pretend to be more than you are. You show your scars and age with grace. You live every second of your existence to the max. This is an ode to Mexico City.
The people that never met you think you are ugly and dirty. Those are probably the same people that adore New York City. Mainly probably because you are expected to like NYC, right?
No one seems to love you. Except… the people that actually live with you every day. They see the imperfections as well. They travel through your subway underbelly, crammed in the endless morning rush hour. They see your traffic arteries clogged up in the morning and late afternoon, making your skin pale from the exhaust gases.
But it is the thousands of intricate cells from your massive body that are so fascinating. You have aged gracefully and woven an intricate network of life.
You radiate this electric energy everywhere in your body. In the endless food stalls on street corners, supplying tacos and tortillas and tortas to the people at any time of the day. In the small workshops where tailors fix clothes, mechanics work on motorcycles and ‘urban teams’ assemble the hippest citybikes. In the countless coffee shops and restaurants with their warm yellow lights in the evening hours.
In the small parks found everywhere, always surrounded and covered by trees that seem centuries old, which betray your age but also make you much greener than anyone would think. And of course in Chapultepec park, which fill your lungs with much-eeded air. Chapultepec IS your lungs.
You live the outside life. Always. Like Latinos tend to do. Humming gently along the vibes of the moderate weather, taking for granted you can be on a terrace or in a park almost 365 days a year in your nice white suit, white hat, no socks and classy leather shoes.
Sometimes you try to be someone you are not, showing your American skyscraper side along Avenida Insurgentes and Avenida Reforma. But you don’t fool me: Walk around the corner to see Latin life permeat these areas as well like ants hunting for every breadcrumb, with food stalls and mobile coffee bars and skate-ramps everywhere to fill every cell of your body with energy.
You are a rock n roller. You know you’re not perfect. But at least you don’t hide that. You are everything a city should be, and more. Sometimes even too much. But that’s better than not pushing the limits at all. That’s why, crazy Mexico City, I love you.