Sunday, December 9, 2012

International Day of the Migrant

We returned to Torreon on the 29th arriving at the office before it was even up and running.  It seems there was another reason for this second return trip.  The visa application had to be signed and fingerprinted.  Now I understood.  The official paperwork had not been completed when we were in the office two days before.

Oh, well . . . it was done quickly enough.  And with our crisp Permisos de Salir in hand, we felt as free as . . . well, as free as Americans in Mexico with FM3 visas. Now we had time to kill before the celebration  beginning at 12:00 noon.
We wandered through the newly renovated Plaza Major 
and admired the art work.  This sculpture collection is called "Winged City."  Torreon is trying to rework its imagine, but it has a tough road ahead.

Then, a five block walk to the Marriott - a stunningly beautiful hotel.  Festivities were to start promptly at 12:00 so we hurried right along.  

Everyone was to take something representative of their home country.  Without salmon, moose, or caribou Alaska was pretty hard to represent.  I thought these people could probably make Mexican food much better than I so Tex-Mex cuisine was out.  I took a salad.  It was very good, but I must admit it was not a shining star among all the delicious food prepared by other migrants.  Recipes from all over the world, exotic spices, bread made from every grain you can imagine and in almost as many shapes.  It was a very impressive display.  But I'm getting ahead of myself.

The table decorations were fun and very well done.
At 12:00, there were only four seats taken.  At 12:30 the crew showed up to make adjustments to the dance floor. 

Finally, about 1:15 the welcoming speeches began and many seats were occupied.  However, as the festivities continued people trickled in.   My stomach was growling, but I soon forgot how hungry I was as I watched the dazzling dance performances.
First, a ballet from Japan.
Then a tango from Argentina.
A hip-hop group representing the United States.
Several dances respresenting countries from all over Latin America.

A fantastic belly dancer.  She wowed the audience.

Then the matachines.
And finally, the Mariachis.

Dinner.  Did I mention the food was delicious?  In addition to all the food brought by the migrants, the hotel prepared a beautiful Mexican buffet.  I'm sure it was as good as it looked, but I couldn't pass up the chance to try all those new foods.  

We had to leave as soon as my salad bowl was empty in order to catch our bus back home.  It had been a fabulous day and left me with a much better view of the Mexican Immigration Department than I had had just a few days before.

Now, to get this Permiso de Salir signed and stamped.  Will the troubles never end?