Saturday, October 20, 2007
1989 Oaxaca, Mexico
I go down to Oaxaca to visit Everett, my old running partner, who is living in Oaxaca. I stay for two weeks, and the second week we go to a remote beach called Tulacalula where we sleep in string hammocks we've bought at a market and brought with us. It costs us 50 cents a night, and we have to take them down each day to make room for an outdoor cafe. This is my first time South of the border, and I naively eat corn on the cob, flavored with goat cheese, from a street vendor, the first day. I have Montezuma's revenge for the rest of the trip. This photo was taken by a boy who was drumming up and down a side street in Oaxaca. I put him against a wall and take his photo. His hand then shot out, and I am naively offended he is asking for money. He is equally offended I 'm not giving him anything for his picture. I never made that mistake again, always carrying a wad of dollar bills, or better yet, providing people with a Polaroid, or sending them a copy. I've felt badly ever since that first encounter that this boy didn't get anything from me. I now realize that he probably made part of his family's living, which might consist of $5 or less a day.