Queretaro continues to impress me in contrast to my visit in the early 1980s. Someone took
charge, preserved the colonial center and created a cultural climate. There is also the ul-
tramodern auditorium where I saw “ Carmen ,” and where the handcrafts fair was held.
We finished our Queretaro assignment on a Friday with a mini-fiesta. I took charge of the
entertainment. There was a long discussion among the group about what to bring to the
party. Cheese, fruit and milk headed the list. So I said, “We're getting into too much work
and creating a logistical problem.” (The volunteers were decent, compassionate, caring,
Mother Teresa types, but hadn't a clue about throwing an appreciation, good-bye fiesta for
the Mexicans.) “I'll take care of it,” I said.
Not far from the hotel was a first-class bakery named Edel Weiss, with a solid array of
pastry delights. I bought a millewafer chocolate cake, a second chocolate cake with huge
glazed strawberries, and custard cups crowned with glazed fruit. When I'm in charge, I buy
what I like. Then I searched for champagne. After discovering that wine and spirits were
just not readily at hand, I told a taxi driver to take me wherever I needed to go to find cham-
pagne. Then, in honor of the great Mexican composer Juventino Rosa, I wrote new lyrics
to “ Sobre las Olas ,” which we know as “ When You Are in Love ,” was emcee for the affair,
We came to teach English,
Here in this beautiful place,
Now we must leave you,
We carry a very sad face.
Our hearts will return,
With many a memory,
Of wonderful students,
Teachers and faculty!
It was a success in spite of my froggy voice.
Mexico's divided class-cultures still catch me off guard. I hailed a taxi for the local
WalMart for party napkins, plates and cups. Inside WalMart you're back in the USA, with
the store surrounded by an enormous parking lot. The First Culture shops here.