During my first year in Mexico I began to learn a great deal about the quirky customs which they have here. Each nation has these of course, and it can be strange for anyone who is coming from the outside, to witness these for the first time. The longer you stay of course, the more that you find yourself recognizing these little quirks.
To anyone who is coming to Mexico, these are some of the little customs and ways which many people here have.
Sweet Little Lies
Some prefer to be punched with the truth rather than being kissed with a lie, but here in Mexico things aren’t exactly like that. As my friend Rose Burillo always points out, here they do not want to disappoint you and this is why they will always agree to come to your party, even if they have another engagement. This is all why asking for directions can be problematic, because even if they do not know, they will still offer you some directions. This is well intentioned of course, but it doesn’t exactly make things very clear.
The word ahorita is a tough one to master, it is used to give a length of time, but it is as clear as mud as to what that length of time is. Ahorita could mean that someone is coming instantly, it could mean in 10 minutes, it may actually mean never. If you hear anyone say that they will do something ‘ahorita’ there is never any real way of knowing when they will come, or whether they will come at all.
It Is Su Casa
One of the loveliest things abut the people here is that when they say that their home is your home (mi casa es su casa) they really do mean it. I have been treated to some absolutely incredible hospitality in this country, often from people who I have known less than 5 minutes. There is such a genuine desire here to give hospitality that when you are on the receiving end, it inspires you to do the same.
I don’t think that I have been to a country in the world where the people have had as much medical assumptions and knowledge as they do here in Mexico. Any ailment which you may have, any slight complaint, there is a holistic solution which everyone is very keen to offer. This is both sweet and at times, very helpful indeed.
Food, Always Food
There is no doubt about it that this is very much a food-obsessed nation, and I mean that in the best possible way. There is always food, every event, every meet-up, every moment, there are concerns about what will be eaten. For most Mexicans, eating is a communal activity, it is a sharing of a moment that is very special and this is why there are always food options, no matter where you go, what time and who with.
These are just some of the little foibles of this nation.