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Miles Davis and the Seven Sisters from Sinaloa

I got an email Sunday from an author whose article I published that morning, thanking me and apologizing for some difficulty in getting me the photos that accompany the article (A Hotshot Photographer) and for not saying hello the day before in the Saturday Market.

Hi David,

Great job with all those photos. I'm sorry there was a problem in getting the photos
to you.

Sorry I didn't get a chance to say HI yesterday. You were very busy. Great!

Pam Walters

She's a regular contributor and becoming a friend and I thought I had something to apologize for myself.

Hola Pam,

My brother once met Miles Davis on a suburban street in California. My brother was doing some work in a neighborhood that Miles visited. Miles, having just parked his yellow Corvette on the street, was walking by. My brother said, "Nice 'Vette." Deep-voiced and drawing out the word, Miles replied, "Yeahhhhh."

When you tell me, "Great job with all those photos," even though you are not here to hear me, I reply, deep-voiced and drawing out the word, "Yeahhhhh," as if to say both "I know" and "thanks." It's not a yellow Corvette, but there are a lot of photos accompanying the article and they are arranged so that they don't overwhelm the article. It's a great pleasure to give your articles the layout they deserve.

Now let me apologize to you. There really wasn't a problem getting me the photos. It's only that I'm very demanding of myself and sometimes that spills over onto others. Sorry. I did need the photos as soon as possible. (Coming home yesterday after a busy day at the market and putting together today's magazine, published by the Mailchimp machine in the wee hours of the morning, I was pleased to discover that I had already set your article.) But I could have been less panicky in the way I told you that I hadn't yet received them.

And, yes, it was good catching your eye yesterday in the market. I'm sorry, too, that we didn't have a chance to talk. It's always delightful to throw some words around with you. Personally, I'm very happy that you came back to San Miguel. And, as a publisher, I am thrilled that my faithful contributor has returned. In my affection for you, I am reminded of a line from a song by Robert Wyatt, the drummer of the iconic British rock band Soft Machine, who drunkenly fell from a fourth-floor window and paralyzed himself from the waist down. After that episode, on his solo album Rock Bottom, a very mournful affair, as you might imagine and as the title implies, on a cut called Sea Song he sings/drones "... your madness fits in neatly with my own."

Veronica has been away five of the last six Saturdays, leaving me to handle our stall at the market all alone. Working alone has been a little stressful. And, now that I'm finally getting the hang of it as a solo gig, she's coming back. When she is present, mostly she's behind the table, doing the set up and most of the breakdown of the display and handling the credit card transactions (a finicky machine that needs everything just right and even then often requires several different tries). I'm out front roping in the customers: "Yes, I am a very good salesman, but it is a great product." Veronica helps with sales when I am away from the table or when there are multiple customers.

When you saw me there were indeed multiple customers; I was surrounded by seven sisters from Sinaloa. I had been chatting them up a little while they were purchasing jewelry at the stand next door, providing my mirror for their use there, flirting a little with the one who spoke the best English; "Are you all married?" My sales pitch, dressing up a potential customer in our highly versatile shawl, is quite a show. There are a dozen ways of wearing it. The sisters loved the shawl and my performance, buying four of them and a ponchito (a little poncho, a darling little accent piece). Their mother had the seven of them and then died when the oldest was 14. Their father remarried and his new wife gave birth to four boys. Later there was a third wife, but I lost count of the children. More than a "flurry," it was a whirlwind of activity, handling seven customers, bantering (as I love to do) with seven sisters while coaxing the credit card app into compliance. I think I could have gotten a date, the English speaking one asking me "Which one do you like?", but I'm not that kind of guy.

I'm happy when the customer is happy.
I'm happy when my authors like their articles' display.
I'm happy you are helping with the magazine.
I'm happy that Veronica is coming back.

Sometimes you have to go it alone. But, really, as Dad told me, "It's no fun unless you have someone to share it with."

"Keep those cards and letters coming." - Bozo the Clown

Gracias y saludos,


photo: Alessandro Bo (cropped)

Dr. David welcomes you to San Miguel Sunday. Anyone with any interest in contributing articles is heartily encouraged to contact him at the email below. The "Best City in the World" deserves a good Lokkal magazine.

events @ sanmiguelevents.com

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